It seems that taking pills is never as easy as the doctor makes out. You “only” have to take them a set number of times a day, sometimes with a gap between popping the pill and eating food, sometimes with food, etc. The list goes on. It’s bad enough with one or two pills but how can you cope when you’ve got lots at all sorts of intervals?
These seem to work best for first thing in the morning and last thing at night pills although they can also work if there’s another thing you need to do at or around pill time and you can guarantee you’ll be in that location every time you need to take the pill.
A visual reminder can be as simple as leaving the pill box somewhere obvious such as your bedside table.
Or it could be a Post It note on the fridge or somewhere else you know you’ll be going regularly.
Use a pill box
When your doctor decides that your pill routine needs to become more complicated, a cheap pill box from somewhere like Amazon works a treat.
Pre-load it with a day or a week’s worth of pills and keep it close by you, checking at regular intervals.
This also helps keep track of which pills you’ve taken throughout the day as this gets more difficult the more pills you ingest.
Use your phone alarm
Setting up an alarm on your mobile phone will probably be annoying (for other people as much as for you) but can be a simple trigger to take your pills.
Most modern phones have recurring alarms in their calendar and so long as you make the alarm message meaningful then you’ll know which pill you need to take when. Of course, you still need access to your pills so if you’re going out for the day, make sure they travel with you!
You may even be able to find a text messaging service that will text you an alert when you need to take each pill. This is obviously more expensive than using the built-in calendar but is definitely an option worth considering.
Learn to make it a habit
Habits take around 14 days to form. Set up more triggers than you’d think sensible at first to make sure that taking your pills regularly actually happens. Over time, reduce the triggers once you find that you’re remembering to take your pills on a regular basis.
Enlist a friend
Especially while you’re getting used to a new pill, ask a trusted friend to help remind you and check that you’ve taken your medicine. Most pills aren’t so precise that they have to be taken spot on a particular time, so if you’re meeting your friend for a coffee it could be one of the things they ask you along with the regular “How are you” type of questions.
There are downloadable hypnosis tracks available that will help train your brain to easily remember to take your pills. They’re inexpensive and will add to your armory to help you to remember to take your pills regularly.