Doctors need to know everything you take on a daily basis, even if it’s just over the counter medicine or a handful of “all natural” supplements. Supplements should be taken only under the direction of your healthcare provider. Most supplements at vitamin shops and at the drugstore aren’t as readily absorbed or even as well tolerated as prescriptions. Often times, these over the counter options can also add up to be a greater expense because there isn’t the benefit of an insurance-covered generic.
We happen to have our own private label supplements, but we only prescribe them when we feel they are necessary, and we carry the supplements most proven to make a clinical difference: fish oil, vitamin D, prenatals, and two different probiotics. We often recommend a prescription for calcium or vitamin D if a person is deficient enough to require supplements in addition to an improved diet.
Some common negative side effects of supplements include gastric issues including constipation and upset stomach. Many formulations of iron supplements come with this complication, and if you are taking an iron supplement without your doctor’s knowledge, you may have to go through more tests and doctor’s visits then you need before he or she figures it out. That’s just one of many examples – so please keep an updated medication list.
Download the CareZone App
One way just to download the CareZone app. It helps you keep a medication list complete with dosages and has the benefit of photo scanning and uploading. Also, if you have an app like this, make sure that you include a note about it in the same location as your emergency contact on your phone. Your emergency contact should be saved in your phone as ICE, which is what first responders will look for in an emergency situation.