Now a landmark study from North Carolina State University has found that changes in daily behavior have a significant effect on whether we remember to take our medication – and that these changes influence older and younger adults differently. That’s good news, because it means there’s something we can do about it.
“We’ve found that it is not just differences between people, but differences in what we do each day, that affect our ability to remember to take medication,” says Dr. Shevaun Neupert, an assistant professor of psychology at NC State and lead author of a paper describing the research. “This is the first time anyone has looked at the effect daily changes in how busy we are affects our ability to remember medications. We also learned that these changes in daily behavior affect different age groups in different ways.
“For example, young people do the best job of remembering to take their medication on days when they are busier than usual,” Neupert says. “But older adults do a better job of remembering their medication on days when they are less busy.”
The researchers evaluated study participants who were on prescribed daily medications. The participants were divided into two groups: younger adults (between the ages of 18 and 20) and older adults (between the ages of 60 and 89).
For both age groups, the researchers found that participants were more likely to remember to take their medications on days when they performed better than usual on “cognition” tests – which evaluate memory and critical thinking.
“We found that cognition is an important factor in remembering medications,” Neupert says, “but that how busy we are is also important.” This has very real applications for helping people remember to take medications that can be essential to their health and well-being.
“We’ve found such a disparity between young and old adults, that it’s clear we need to tailor our messages to these two groups,” Neupert says. “For example, it is important for young people to stay busy and be active. That will help them remember to take their medications. However, we need to let older adults know that need to be particularly vigilant about remembering medication on days when they expect to be busier than usual.”
The study, “Age Differences in Daily Predictors of Forgetting to Take Medication: The Importance of Context and Cognition,” will be published in a forthcoming issue of Experimental Aging Research. It was co-authored by Neupert, NC State graduate student Taryn Patterson, former NC State undergraduate Agnes Davis and Dr. Jason Allaire, an associate professor of psychology at NC State. The research was funded by a gift from Vasudha Gupta.
NC State’s Department of Psychology is part of the university’s College of Humanities and Social Sciences.
Matt Shipman | EurekAlert!
Diagnoses: When Are Several Opinions Better Than One?
19.07.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung
High in calories and low in nutrients when adolescents share pictures of food online
07.04.2016 | University of Gothenburg
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.
"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...
COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.
In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...
'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.
Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...
14.10.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
12.10.2016 | Event News
21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine
21.10.2016 | Information Technology
21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences