Guides

Adherence tips

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Tips to help

  • Choose a treatment that fits best with your life.
  • Find out what is involved before you choose your treatment:  How many tablets? How big are they? How often do you need to take them? How exact do you have to be with timing? Are there food restrictions? Are there easier options?
  • Use a weekly pill box. Then you can see if you miss a dose. If your clinic does not provide one, most chemists sell one for about £2 – a good investment. i-Base can sometimes provide these free – call the phoneline for details.
  • Plan your timetable. For the first few weeks, mark the time that you take each dose.
  • Use the alarm on your mobile phone or watch for all doses. Then take your meds when it beeps! Perhaps set the alarm just after the right time, so it is a reminder and not something you rely on.
  • Link to another daily routine – for example brushing your teeth.
  • If you travel, take additional drugs with you in case flights or other arrangements change.
  • Keep an emergency supply where you might need them – at work or a friend’s house etc.
  • Ask a friend to remind you at difficult dose times, for example, when you are out at night.
  • Ask how other people manage and if they have tips. Your clinic or support group can usually arrange for you to talk to someone who is taking the same ART.
  • Contact your clinic if you have side effects. They can prescribe additional drugs to help or change the treatment if needed.
  • Many combinations are taken once-daily. This usually means taking them every 24 hours. Twice-daily drugs need to be taken every 12 hours.

Last updated: 1 September 2016.