1.Read the Label.
Before you take any medicine, read the label. It should show:
2.Keep a Record
Share our infographic! The graphic lists four simple steps you can take to promote the safe and proper use of prescription and over-the-counter medications. Visit our infographic page to see a larger image and learn more about safe medication use or flickr for even more sizes.
3.Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about your medicines.
Good questions to ask are:
- If I forget to take it, what should I do?
- Should I take this on an empty stomach or with food?
- What problems should I watch for?
Medicines can cause problems or side effects, such as sleepiness, headaches, or rashes. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about possible side effects. To avoid problems:
- Organize your medicines.
- Don’t skip taking your medicines.
- Don’t share medicines.
Interesting Facts about Medicine Use
- Eighty-two percent of U.S. adults take at least one prescription drug per week.
- Twenty-nine percent of U.S. adults take five or more prescription drugs per week.
- U.S. spending on prescription drugs reached $234.1 billion in 2008.
You can help promote information to help keep women and their families safe: share our infographic, watch the video, and download our publications related to medicine use.
| The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Office of Women's Health has created a public service announcement (PSA)
titled "Use Medicines Wisely". The PSA provides several tips to
encourage the public to safely use their prescription and
over-the-counter medicines. |
Download or order any of the free fact sheets and brochures listed on this page. Simply click on the link or go to the Free Publications website.
These booklets provide information on FDA-approved products for high blood pressure, depression, menopause, high cholesterol, birth control, HIV, and smoking cessation.
My Medicines: A Medicine Recordkeeper
Use the My Medicines brochure to help you keep track of the medicines you take. This brochure is available in English, Spanish, Arabic, Polish, and 10 Asian/Pacific Islander languages.
- My Medicines - flower version (PDF 6427KB)
- My Medicines - blue version (PDF 274KB)
- New: My Medicines - Fill Out and Print (PDF 1.5MB)
- Mis Medicinas - Spanish flower version (PDF 197KB)
- Mis Medicinas - Spanish blue version (PDF 699KB)
- New: Mis Medicinas - Fill Out and Print (PDF 1.58 MB)
- My Medicines - Other languages
These one-page fact sheets provide easy-to-read information on safe medication use.
- Use Medicines Wisely
- Antibiotic Resistance
- Dietary Supplements
- Generic Drugs
- Medicines and Pregnancy
- Over-the-Counter Drug Facts Label