Understanding What’s Written in Your Doctor’s Prescription | Southstar Drug

Jessa Garcia

Disclaimer: This article features medical and health topics for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to replace or serve as medical or professional advice for self-diagnosis, self-treatment, self-medication, or the like for any health-related condition or medical emergency. Make sure to consult a health care or medical professional for proper medical care, diagnosis, or treatment related to your situation. 

 

Understand what’s on your prescriptions with this guide from Southstar Drug.

Doctor prescribing medicine

 

A medical prescription or an “Rx” is a kind of letter written by a healthcare professional, usually a physician. When you show a pharmacist this letter, it serves as an authorization to sell you the medicines indicated.

Whether you’re buying from a traditional or an online drugstore, you’re going to need a medical prescription for prescription drugs. This is because these products are controlled substances, which must be taken correctly for them to be safe and effective. If you don’t follow the usage instructions, you may experience unpleasant consequences such as drug dependence or overdose.

That said, it can be a little confusing to read what’s in your prescription. Your doctor will of course explain to you what they’ve written; pharmacists also know what all the abbreviations stand for. However, there are times when you might forget a few details; this makes understanding a medical prescription a valuable skill to have.

Here are some things you need to keep in mind so you can better comprehend what your doctor’s prescription means:

The Parts of Your Prescription

There are distinct parts of a standard medical prescription. These are (1) the doctor information, (2) the patient information, and (3) the drug information.

The doctor information includes the doctor’s name, their license number, as well as the names and contact details of the institutions where they’re affiliated. Meanwhile, the patient information indicates the patient’s name, age, and sex. Other relevant data such as weight and allergies are also indicated, because these will affect the prescription itself.

Last but not least, the drug information will contain the following details:

  • The name of the medicine
  • The dosage of the medicine
  • How often and when to take the medicine
  • How to take the medicine properly

For some medications, such as for sleeping pills, your doctor may also write how many times a prescription can be refilled. Once this number has been reached, you cannot use the same prescription again; you have to have another consultation where you will be issued a new one.

There are also times when your doctor will require a specific brand of medicine. They may indicate this by writing “no substitution” or something similar. At the bottom of the prescription, there should be a space for your doctor’s signature and the date.

Nowadays, some medical professionals have electronic or digital prescriptions. You can use these when buying at online drugstores, or your doctor can send them directly to the pharmacy. What’s great about digital prescriptions is that they lower the chance of errors.

Common Abbreviations in Medical Prescriptions

One of the most popular jokes about doctors is that they have horrible handwriting, which makes prescriptions difficult to understand. Of course, not all doctors have “chicken scratch” penmanship. What’s more, you can always ask your doctor to explain the prescription. If there’s something you don’t understand, don’t hesitate to ask for clarifications.

In addition, pharmacists are there to interpret what’s written on your prescription. Still, as mentioned earlier, knowing how to read a medical prescription is definitely useful. This is particularly true if you or a family member has chronic health conditions.

The abbreviations you see in a prescription are derived from Latin words. Here are some of the most common ones you’ll see and what they mean:

  • ac - before meals
  • pc - after meals
  • int - between meals
  • hs - at bedtime
  • bid - twice a day
  • q - every (e.g., q3h is every 3 hours)
  • qd - every day
  • qod - every other day
  • qid - four times a day
  • tid - three times a day
  • ad lib - as needed
  • cap - capsule
  • tab - tablet
  • gtt - drops
  • po - by mouth
  • sl - sublingual or under the tongue

You may also see i, ii, iii, or iiii included in the drug information section. This is the number of doses you have to take, whenever you take the medicine. The exact dose—e.g., 1 mg, 1 mL, and the like—will also be indicated. There’s also “ss” which stands for one half.

Medication Safety Tips

Aside from following what’s written in the prescription, there are also other ways to ensure the effectiveness of your treatment. For example, you should always store your medications in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight to maintain stability and potency. There’s no need to refrigerate, unless there’s a specific instruction for it. It’s also inadvisable to store different kinds of tablets or capsules in one bottle, because this can also affect the stability of the medicines.

If the medicines you buy come with cups or spoons, use those to ensure proper dosing. Should your prescription expire before you’re able to finish the course of treatment, dispose of the remaining medication and its container properly. Then, get in touch with your doctor for another consultation and prescription.

Last but certainly not least, all medications have side effects. If you experience any, especially severe ones or those not indicated in the packaging, call your doctor immediately.

 

With regards to medicines, it’s best to trust your doctor and pharmacists because they have the right education and training. Still, being able to understand a prescription is never a bad thing. At the very least, you’ll be better informed about your health.

To ensure all your prescription meds are new and effective, purchase them online at Southstar Drug. Take advantage of our FREE delivery service if you purchase a total of Php 1,499 and up for Metro Manila, Rizal, and select areas in Pampanga, Cavite, and Batangas. For the remaining provinces, you may enjoy FREE delivery service for purchases worth Php 5,000 and up.

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6 Must-Have Items for Your Home First Aid Kit

Jessa Garcia

open-first-aid-kit-white-background

 

A first aid kit is a must for every home, so that you’re always prepared to handle accidents and minor injuries like cuts, bruises, or sprains. It also ensures that you can provide immediate treatment for minor illnesses like a cold, cough, or allergy.

While you can purchase a kit pre-filled with medical supplies, building your own lets you select specific items that suit your and your family’s needs. As you put together a home first aid kit, make sure to include the essential items listed below:

Over-the-Counter Medicines

Whether you have a headache, muscle strain, or stomach pain, there are over-the-counter medications you can rely on to manage your symptoms. These medicines can be easily purchased and don’t require a prescription. You can either get them from your local pharmacy or buy medicines online for your convenience. You also have the option to buy either branded or generic medicines.

Whatever you choose, remember to stock your first aid kit with these medications:

  • Ibuprofen – It is used to treat pain in the form of headaches, menstrual cramps, dental pains, muscle aches, and the like. It can also reduce fever and relieve minor symptoms associated with the common cold or flu. As a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, ibuprofen blocks the body’s production of substances that cause inflammation. 
  • Paracetamol – This is also used to treat various pains and reduce fever. Compared to ibuprofen, paracetamol doesn’t help in decreasing inflammation.  
  • Loperamide – It is taken to treat sudden diarrhea. It works by slowing the movement of the gut, which decreases the frequency of bowel movements and makes the stool less watery.
  • Antacids – They help relieve symptoms of heartburn, indigestion, or an upset stomach by neutralizing the acidity in the stomach.
  • Laxatives – These are used to help treat constipation. They work by loosening stools and increasing bowel movement.
  • Antihistamines – These are medications that help relieve symptoms of allergies like watery eyes, itchy eyes, sneezing, and runny nose. They are also used to treat symptoms of allergic rhinitis, sinusitis, and the common cold.
  • Cold medications – These can be any medicines to help you relieve the symptoms of the common cold. Typically, you get nasal decongestants to help unclog stuffy nose or cough suppressants to control coughing. Also, include expectorants in your kit to loosen mucus in your lungs and make it watery enough so you can easily cough it up.
  • Throat lozenges – They help ease symptoms of sore throat.

Prescription Medication

If you or anyone in your household is taking prescription medications, make sure to keep at least a week’s worth of them in your home first aid kit. Keeping a small stock of your maintenance medications can be very useful in case you run out and can’t leave the house, especially during typhoons or similar emergencies. 

Wound Care Supplies

Some of the most common injuries you might experience in your home are cuts, scrapes, and burns. To ensure you’re ready to treat these minor injuries, stock your first aid kit with gauze pads, dressing pads, bandage rolls, micropore tape, and adhesive bandages. Make sure they are of varying sizes to cover different-sized wounds. 

Also, remember to put wound cleaning supplies in the kit such as antiseptic cleaning solution, hydrogen peroxide, and antibiotic ointment. Additionally, keep a tube of hydrocortisone cream to ease any symptoms and discomfort caused by skin conditions like itching, swelling, insect bites, eczema, dermatitis, or skin allergies.

Thermometer

The normal body temperature ranges from 36.4 to 37.2 degrees Celsius. This can vary throughout the day, so this change isn’t something to be really concerned about. However, you need to watch out for any sudden elevation in body temperature as this may be an indication of an infection or illness. Keeping a thermometer in your home first aid kit allows you to easily check if you or other members of your household have a fever. This way, you can determine the next steps you need to take whether that may be taking over-the-counter medicines or seeking immediate treatment from a doctor.

Tweezers

Having a splinter or shard of glass stuck in your skin can be quite uncomfortable. It can also lead to an infection if you leave it for too long. If you have a pair of tweezers, you can quickly and safely remove stubborn splinters no matter how small they may be. Keeping tweezers in your first aid kit also means you can access them as soon as you need them instead of rummaging through the house to find them.

Hot and Cold Pack

While inside the house, you can accidentally slip, fall, or hit your head. These injuries can be painful but fortunately can be quickly remedied by a reusable hot or cold pack. Depending on what you need to ease the pain from the incident, you can warm or cool the pack. If you need something warm, you can submerge it into a pot of hot water until it has reached the desired temperature. In case you need an ice pack, put the pack in the freezer until it chills.


Whether you’re buying a first aid kit or building one for yourself and your family, make sure it has the must-have items mentioned above. These supplies can help you treat minor injuries and common illnesses. More importantly, having a stocked first aid kit in your home allows you to reduce the severity of any injury. 

Complete your first aid kit with health essentials online at Southstar Drug. Take advantage of our FREE delivery service if you purchase a total of Php 1,499 and up for Metro Manila, Rizal, and select areas in Pampanga, Cavite, and Batangas. For the remaining provinces, you may enjoy FREE delivery service for purchases worth Php 5,000 and up.

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7 Things You Should Always Buy from Drugstores | Southstar Drug

Jessa Garcia

Disclaimer: This article features medical and health topics for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to replace or serve as medical or professional advice for self-diagnosis, self-treatment, self-medication, or the like for any health-related condition or medical emergency. Make sure to consult a health care or medical professional for proper medical care, diagnosis, or treatment related to your situation. 

Pharmacist picking medicine

Read on to know which vital items you should consider buying from a drugstore.

When you think about or search for “online drugstore Philippines,” you’re most likely planning to purchase over-the-counter (OTC) or prescription medication. It’s practically automatic because, after all, a drugstore’s primary function is to sell pharmaceutical products.

However, most drugstores in the country nowadays have more than just medicines on their shelves and in their refrigerators. From snacks and beverages to a range of home essentials, you can find plenty of affordable products from your trusted drugstore (online or otherwise).

Here are some examples of products that you should put in your cart the next time you’re shopping at a drugstore:

Health Supplements

If you take health supplements and vitamins, the best source for them is a drugstore. Aside from a wider variety of products than you can find in supermarkets, drugstores also have proper storage facilities to maintain the potency of these products.

In addition, pharmacists can give you recommendations if you have specific health goals or concerns. It’s not absolutely necessary, of course, and supplements are usually OTC anyway. Nevertheless, it’s good to know that you have this option should you want or need it.

Medical Supplies

It’s always good to have a well-stocked first aid kit at home. Some of the essentials include adhesive bandages, gauze, medical tape, antiseptic, antibiotic cream, burn ointment, sterile gloves, small scissors, tweezers, and some cotton balls or swabs. For OTC medications, your first aid kit should contain painkillers, antihistamines, as well as those for immediate cough and cold relief. To be extra prepared, consider adding medicines for hyperacidity and loose bowel movement.

The good news? All of these can be found at affordable prices in drugstores! Aside from these products, most drugstores also sell medical aids and basic equipment. These include glucometers and digital blood pressure monitors.

Baby Diapers

One of the biggest expenses of new parents, particularly those with newborns, is diapers. The usual recommendation is about once every 3 hours, although the best rule to follow is “as often as needed.” This is because babies may urinate every hour or so, and have up to five bowel movements in a day. In short, you can go through a big pack of diapers in just 1 week.

Thankfully, drugstores sell different brands and sizes of diapers; just pick the product that’s “hiyang” for your baby. If you want to save a bit more money, check if the drugstore has generic or store-brand diapers.

Formula Milk and Adult Nutrition Powders

Another big expense for parents is formula milk. For newborns, you can expect to be feeding them up to 12 times every 24 hours. As they grow older, they will start needing fewer but bigger amounts of milk. To save money, buy formula milk from drugstores. Not only is it much cheaper, but you may also find variants or special formulations that are more suitable for your baby’s needs.

You can also buy adult formula and nutrition powders from drugstores. As with food supplements, pharmacists can provide advice and recommendations to help you or your loved ones achieve health goals.

Paper Products and Cotton Products

Aside from baby diapers, you may also want to purchase your daily paper products like bathroom tissues, paper towels, and table napkins from drugstores. You’ll enjoy lower prices, which is definitely good for your wallet because these are often-used products that run out quickly.

In addition, drugstores also sell cotton products like rolls, balls, and swabs at the same or lower price than supermarkets.

Hygiene Products

One of the best places to buy hygiene products is your favorite drugstore, due to coupons and other forms of discounts. Some of the items you might want to stock up on include deodorant, razors, and regular bath soap.

There are also plenty of affordable dental products that you can buy in drugstores, particularly toothbrushes. Remember, you don’t need expensive toothbrushes with special bristles. As long as you’re using proper strokes, brushing for at least 2 minutes, and brushing your tongue as well, you’re good! Follow it up with dental floss for complete dental care.

Basic Cosmetics

For your basic cosmetic needs, such as lip balm, eyeshadow, or even compact powder, you may be surprised to find a decent selection at drugstores. Plus, like many other items in this list, the cosmetics you’ll find at drugstores are much cheaper than those you’ll find at specialty stores.

 

Gone were the days when drugstores only sold medicines. When you take a look at their array of products, they often rival or sometimes exceed those found in convenience stores.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that a drugstore can completely replace a grocery or supermarket. However, it’s also true that some products are cheaper in a drugstore; there are also certain item categories that you can’t find in other stores at all.

The key here is to determine which products are worth buying in different kinds of shops. This way, you can better manage your time and money.

To ensure you buy trusted health essentials such as over-the-counter medicines or vitamins and supplements, you may purchase online at Southstar Drug. Take advantage of our FREE delivery service if you purchase a total of Php 1,499 and up for Metro Manila, Rizal, and select areas in Pampanga, Cavite, and Batangas. For the remaining provinces, you may enjoy FREE delivery service for purchases worth Php 5,000 and up.

Happy shopping!

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Top 5 Tips for Buying Health Products Online | Southstar Drug

Jessa Garcia

Disclaimer: This article features medical and health topics for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to replace or serve as medical or professional advice for self-diagnosis, self-treatment, self-medication, or the like for any health-related condition or medical emergency. Make sure to consult a health care or medical professional for proper medical care, diagnosis, or treatment related to your situation. 

Lady taking notes

 

Shopping online for health-related products can be challenging, so Southstar Drug shares some tips to help you for your next purchase.

The convenience of online shopping is undeniable. With the wide range of products available through various e-commerce sites, you can buy everything you need and want without leaving the comfort of your home.

What’s more, the kinds of products you can purchase online continue to grow. Before, the selections ranged from groceries and home essentials to electronics and fashion accessories. Now, you can also find and buy medical products online. Just one search of “buy medicine online Philippines” and you’ll be met with hundreds if not thousands of choices.

Of course, purchasing medications and health products from websites requires additional care. If you don’t exercise caution, you might end up with something that can do you more harm than good. Instead of getting better, you might end up endangering your health.

To make sure that you’re getting quality medicines and health products online, keep in mind these 5 tips:

Consult Your Doctor

Whenever you need (or feel like you need) to take medications, it’s best to consult your doctor first and get a proper diagnosis. You may discover that you don’t really have to take medicines for your condition, but rather just let nature take its course. If it turns out that you do need to medicate, then your doctor can provide treatment recommendations that will produce the best results.

Aside from writing you a prescription if needed, your doctor can also tell you what side effects you need to watch out for when taking your medicines. If you’re taking supplements, your doctor can also tell you whether it’s advisable to continue with it or better to stop in the meantime.

With the help of your doctor, you’ll have more information to work with so you can make better decisions when it comes to your health. In addition, you can also save money! The professional fee you pay is definitely worth it when you consider the risks you’ll be able to avoid.

Buy from Reputable Establishments

If you’ve established with your doctor that you need to purchase medicines, the next step you have to take is to look for trustworthy establishments. Fortunately, top drugstores in the country like Southstar Drug already have online counterparts. Thus, you can rest assured that you can purchase quality medicines, health equipment, and similar products.

Don’t take your chances with unfamiliar sellers with unproven reputations. You may end up getting untested products, expired goods, or medicines with dangerous ingredients. For machines like blood pressure monitors, you might not get accurate readings or the equipment might break after just a few uses.

If these situations happen, you might encounter difficulties in getting proper compensation and issue resolution if you dealt with shady establishments.

Look for Well-Known Brands

In addition to buying only from established online drugstores, it’s also important to look for quality brands or those that you already know work for you. For over-the-counter medicines, it’s easy to determine the good ones as they are usually the most popular as well. However, this is not to say that generic medicines are not good or effective. The most important thing is that they work and that they’re safe.

For prescription medications, consult your doctor first before switching brands. In some cases, you might not have other options because there’s only one manufacturer that makes the specific formulation that you need. Don’t immediately buy an alternative online; get the opinion of a qualified health professional before anything else!

Pay Attention to Over-Promising Keywords

In order to sell their products, pharmaceutical manufacturers advertise the benefits of their medicines. They may say that a painkiller can be taken even if you haven’t eaten yet, without causing an upset stomach. This is pretty normal; the problems come when there are promises or claims that are too good to be true.

Pay close attention to keywords like “miracle cure” or other exaggerated declarations of benefits. Even “risk-free” is something to watch out for, as all medications have some form of side effects (even if that side effect is small or negligible). In addition, don’t take medicines just because they’re recommended to you by someone who found them effective. You may not experience the same effects or end up with a worse condition. When in doubt, consult your doctor.

Check the Website’s Security

Once you’ve finally decided to push through with your online purchase of health products, you should verify that the website you chose to buy from is secure. This isn’t a big issue when it comes to established sellers, but it still doesn’t hurt to check the security measures being implemented.

First, check the security protocol of the website. It should have “https” instead of just “http” on the address bar. A padlock icon will also indicate that the website is protected. About payment methods, make sure that you aren’t being asked to send information through email. Rather, they should capture your details on-site where it’s encrypted by their security protocol.

 

All in all, buying health products online is just like your usual online shopping experience. The main difference is that you should work closely with health professionals so you know you’re in good hands.

You can now conveniently purchase your medicines online at Southstar Drug. Take advantage of our FREE delivery service if you purchase a total of Php 1,499 and up for Metro Manila, Rizal, and select areas in Pampanga, Cavite, and Batangas. For the remaining provinces, you may enjoy FREE delivery service for purchases worth Php 5,000 and up.

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Southstar Drug joins national government’s “Resbakuna sa Botika”

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Southstar Drug is one of the first drugstores in the country to heed the call of the national government in making vaccines more accessible to Filipinos. The official launch of the drugstore chain as a Resbakuna Center was held on January 20 at Southstar Drug, Concepcion Uno, Marikina.

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Celebrating Southstar Drug’s Milestones for 2021

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Join Southstar Drug as we celebrate our performance and achievements this year.

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Southstar Drug Holiday Online Warehouse SALE!

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Make your Christmas a lot merrier with our exclusive promos. Score great deals and discounts with Southstar Drug Holiday Online Warehouse SALE!

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