Looking after your health and well being is essential at all ages to help you stay independent and healthy. It is important to be aware of your body and mind. If you notice any changes such as feeling dizzy, pain, drowsy or depressed, it is important to see your GP. You can improve your health by checking your medicines, keeping a healthy mind and fueling your body.
Check Your Medicines
As you get older you may start to take more medicines. Medicines include medicines prescribed by your GP, products available over-the-counter from your local pharmacy, supermarket and health food stores as well as herbal products, vitamin and mineral supplements and homeopathic products.
All medicines have side effects and these side effects increase the more you take. Long-term use of some medications, such as sleeping pills, will increase your risk of having a fall.
What should I look for when I check my medicines?
- Keep an up-to-date list of your medicines. Note the use-by date and the reason why you are taking themedicine.
- Book a medicine check or a home medicine review by your GP or pharmacist.
- If you have been on sleeping tablets for longer than two weeks, please ask your GP about a gradual reduction plan.
- Do not share medicines. Mixing medicines can increase side effects.
- Ask your pharmacist to organise your medicines into a dosage administration aid or Webster Pack, so you know how many and how often to take your medicines.
- Be aware of your body and mind. If you notice any changes such as feeling dizzy, pain, drowsy or depressed, please speak to your GP.
- To download or order a free copy of a NPS medicines list click here or call NPS on (02) 8217 8700.
Who can help?
- Council on the ageing WA: www.cotawa.asn.au
- National Prescribing Service: www.nps.org.au
- Your GP (you might like to ask them about a home medicine review)
- Your local Pharmacist
Keep a Healthy Mind
Just like muscles lose their strength, so does your brain. Growing older does not mean that your mind and mental strength have to reduce. There are lots of activities that you can do to help keep your mind active and alert.
How can I keep an active and alert mind?
- Keep your brain active to increase your reaction time and alertness to hazards. Try activities such as puzzles, home repairs and reading.
- Playing games with your grand kids or joining a social group is a fun way to keep your brain alert.
- Drink alcohol responsibly.
Who can help?
- Act Belong Commit: http://www.actbelongcommit.org.au/
- Your local council or seniors centre
Fuel Your Body
What we put into our body has an effect on how our body works, moves and reacts to different situations in life. Fuelling our body improves our health by providing our body with the correct nutrients it needs to live a positive, happy and healthy life. Steps to Fuel Your Body include:
- Eat regular meals and snacks to stay strong and fuel your body
- Make sure every meal or snack is made up of nutritious foods from the five food groups to keep your body working well.
- Drink more water to help you stay healthy and active
- Drink less alcohol to keep your brain and body
Who can help?
Nutrition Australia WA: www.nutritionaustralia.org/wa
Foodbank WA: www.foodbankwa.org.au