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For many people risk is an accepted part of everyday life. Every day activities such as catching the bus, travelling on holiday, playing football, setting up home and starting a family all carry some element of risk. Risk plays a part in our health, safety, security, well-being, employment, education, daily activities, using resources and equipment and in community participation. But some adults, for example disabled people or older people, are often discouraged from taking risks. Traditionally they are not encouraged to take risks in areas such as budgeting, planning, employment and daily living skills. This may be either because of their perceived limitations or fear that they or others might be harmed. Everyone has a right to take risks and make decisions about their lives. There is a balance to be found between service user’s participation in everyday activities and your duty of care. Changes in social care and health policy mean that all adults are being actively encouraged to increase their independence by, for example, travelling independently, and by being fully involved in mainstream society through education, work and leisure. It is impossible ever to fully eliminate risk. It is however possible to minimise and prepare for risk by preventative action. To support people to live independently or to travel independently or take part in everyday activities means accepting that there are risks that cannot be avoided but can be minimised and prepared for.
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There are 4 types of medication classes these are GSL (general sales list), P (pharmacy medicines), POM (prescription only medicines) and CD (controlled drugs). * GSL medicines MUST be licensed and are sold in shops and supermarkets. Examples of these types of medicine are 36 paracetamol and Gaviscon.
* P medicines can only be sold in registered pharmacies under the supervision of the pharmacist. An example of this is Cholramphenicol (eye drops).
* POM medicines MUST be prescribed before they can be supplied by a pharmacist. An example of this is Eumovate cream.
* CD medicines must be prescribed by a medical practitioner. An example of this is Ritalin. In addition to these there are other medicines you could come across. * Complementary or alternative medicines.
These may be brought from supermarkets and chemists and can include vitamins, minerals, nutritional supplements, herbal remedies and aromatherapy.
* Homeopathic medicines.
These remedies are believed to work by a principle of “like curing like”, which means that a substance, which can cause harm in high doses, can cure the same symptoms when given in tiny doses. They believe that this stimulates the body to heal itself.
* Herbal remedies.
These can be prescribed by an herbal practitioner and are available from health shops. These should be used with caution as they can sometimes interact with some traditional medicines. Always consult a doctor before using.
* Chinese medicines
These are used to cure the imbalances in the body that have caused disease. They are usually prescribed by a Chinese practitioner but some can be brought from over the counter.
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There are a number of medications that require ongoing measurements. One is insulin (blood glucose testing) to ensure the blood glucose is not too high (which prevents healing and increases the risk of damage to the nerve endings among many other effects) or too low (could induce a loss of consciousness for example) And the other is warfarin (a blood thinner) which requires the blood be checked regularly to monitor how effective the drug is i.e. is it preventing the blood being too 'thin' (which could cause an internal bleed) or under anti-coagulated leaving the patient at risk of blood clots.
Any person can and may experience side effects or adverse reactions to any medication they take. The most common side effects are: * Rashes