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Health 123

Health 123 -Have you taken your medicine? Before or after your meal?

Have you experienced this before? Every time after visiting the doctor and bringing a pack of medicine home, you realize that some medicines need to be taken before meal, while some need to be taken after meal, and this makes you confused and feel troubled? 

In fact, the timing of taking medicine matters! Some medicines are to be taken before meals, for instance drugs that protect your stomach lining and are used to cure stomachache caused by chronic gastritis, stomach ulcer or excessive stomach acid. These types of medicine will form a layer of protective membrane over the abdominal wall. Therefore, it is usually to be consumed half an hour or an hour before meals, so that no hindrance will come in between the contact of medicine and abdominal wall.

Just think about it, if you consumed the medicine that is supposed to be taken before meals only after you have finished your meals, you will not recover even if you keep on taking it and finished all your doses.
Furthermore, Domperidone, a kind of medicine that helps to enhance movement of your gastrointestinal tract, must be taken 15-30 minutes before meal so that it is easier to be absorbed and be effective.

In addition, some antibiotics, antidiarrheal, antihypertensive drugs, oral hypoglycaemic drug, etc., are suggested to be consumed before meal!

On the other hand, medicines like anti-inflammatory (Aspirin, Ibuprofen) and iron agent (Iron Sulphate) may irritate and hurt our stomach if we were to take it before meals. Therefore, they are to be taken after meals to minimize its stimulation to gastrointestinal tract, so that they will not trigger any ulcer problem in the digestive tract. Moreover, the absorption and treatment effect of certain medicines can be enhanced if they were taken after meals, such as diuretic (Spironolactone), fat-soluble vitamin A, D, E, K etc.

The advice of medical experts is always to take medicine with warm water. Do not consume it with tea, coffee, soft drinks, milk, or soup, to avoid any possible interaction between your medicine and beverage.

Lastly, the most convenient and safest way of knowing when to take certain medicine is to follow the instructions given on the medicine pack. Please consult your doctor or pharmacist if you are unsure, as you will not get your anticipated treatment results if you consume it in the wrong manner and it might even cause you certain unnecessary side effects!