Wellness Tips

COLUMN: Local pharmacist offers health tips for seniors

Despite the allure of the golden years, it’s important to recognize that many seniors confront health challenges as they age, says local pharmacist

On Oct. 1, we celebrated National Seniors Day, a moment to acknowledge the seniors in our lives. Despite the allure of the golden years, it’s important to recognize that many seniors confront health challenges as they age.

These challenges can range from chronic illnesses to minor ailments, but one thing remains consistent: the right support can significantly improve their quality of life.

In my role as a pharmacist, I’m dedicated to assisting you in accessing the care and guidance you require, conveniently available right in your community and throughout all phases of life, even in retirement! Whether you’re seeking in-store assistance or exploring virtual care options, I’ve outlined the various ways we can provide support on your journey to better health and wellness.

Medication reviews: Many seniors will have several medications they take regularly, and it is not uncommon for people to lose track of their schedule, which can lead to worsening symptoms.

Your local pharmacist is a great resource to create an optimal medication routine. Pharmacists can conduct medication reviews to assess the correct timing, frequency and dosages for your medications. We assess how all your prescription, over-the-counter drugs and supplements work together to ensure they are safe and effective for you. 

We can also provide tools, such as blister packs and notify you when things are ready, which can make it easier to stay on schedule with your medication.  

Heart health: People aged 65 and older are at higher risk of suffering a heart attack, a stroke, or developing coronary heart disease. The good news is that many of the risk factors can be reduced by making healthier lifestyle changes. Your pharmacist can work with you to identify specific factors that may put you at a higher risk of developing heart disease and help you develop action plans to lower your risk. This could include maintaining a healthy blood pressure, learning to manage stress, limiting alcohol consumption and quitting smoking.

Flu and COVID-19: The flu and COVID-19 can pose serious threats for seniors, with people 65 years old and older being at a greater risk because their immune systems are weaker and they are more likely to have an underlying condition that increases their risk. One of the most effective ways to protect yourself and your loved ones this season is by getting your annual flu shot as well as your COVID-19 booster. 

Influenza immunity wanes from year to year, so even if you got the flu shot last year, it is important to get vaccinated again for continued protection. Same with COVID-19 too, so everyone should get another COVID-19 vaccine booster if it’s been at least six months since the last one.

If you have questions or concerns about vaccination options, your pharmacist is a great resource to bring those to, we’re here to answer any questions and make sure you are comfortable and in control of your health. 

PC Health Stations: Next time you visit your local Shoppers Drug Mart or Loblaw stores, keep an eye out for a PC Health Station. At these stations, you can stay on top of your weight management, diabetes and heart health. You can track your blood pressure, pulse, weight and body mass index so you know where your health stands. Plus, you can connect the PC Health app with PC Health Stations to manage all your readings in one place and use this as a resource when bringing any questions to your pharmacist.

Your local pharmacist is here to support you through every stage of life, and make sure you are supported so you can feel your best through your retirement, so if you are experiencing any of these conditions, be sure to stop by your local pharmacy to see how your pharmacist can help. 

BiQi (Becky) He is a pharmacist and owner of your local Shoppers Drug Mart in Orillia. Visit ShoppersDrugMart.ca to find your nearest store.


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