How to Take Doxycycline Safely
As with any prescription drug, you should always follow the directions of your doctor and pharmacist.
Because this drug is taken for a wide variety of different conditions (including the prevention of malaria) and with a wide range of ages and body weights, calculating the right dose is highly individual. Do not guess the dose for yourself. Wherever possible, store the drug out of the reach of children in a cool and dry place. Places to avoid include the bathroom and kitchen where there may be higher humidity.
Do not keep this medication for too long. If it reaches its expiry date, dispose of the tablets safely.
It is most important that you take the course of treatment through to the end. Do not stop taking an antibiotic just because you feel better. Make sure that the largest possible number of bacteria are killed before you stop taking the drug. Indeed, if you do stop early, the original infection may return. However, treatment with any antibiotic can encourage the growth of bacteria that are not susceptible. If the balance of bacterial colonies is changed too dramatically, secondary infections may arise from the newly enlarged colonies. For example, the overgrowth of bacteria in the gut can result in sometimes severe diarrhea. You must always monitor the way in which your body reacts and consult a doctor if anything unexpected happens.
Because Doxycycline can cause some irritation to the throat and esophagus, it is best to drink a full glass of water to wash the medication quickly down to the stomach. It is up to you to decide whether you want to take this drug with or without food. Whatever your decision, be consistent during the course of the treatment. However, one of the side effects of this medication is the possibility of stomach upsets. Do not take antacids. In such cases, it is better to wait until after eating before taking the drug.
Some children and adults find it difficult to swallow tablets. There is a temptation to crush them and to make a mixture with jam or something else sweet to hide the taste. This is not advisable with Doxycycline. It is possible to acquire this drug in liquid form so make a point of telling your doctor or pharmacist, and getting the more appropriate form to take. Shake the bottle well before measuring out the correct volume. Follow it with a full glass of water.
Should you forget to take a dose, aim to maintain the schedule given by your doctor. Take the missing dose as soon as you remember. If the next dose is not due for another two or three hours, take it when it is due. If you are a little too close to the next due time, wait an hour or so and then resume the usual schedule.