Tablets and capsules are oral medications that may be used in the treatment of many skin conditions.
While some types of tablets are available over the counter at the chemist, others require a prescription, and some may require that you are routinely monitored if you are advised to use them by your GP or by the dermatologist.
Some common types of tablets used to treat skin conditions include;
These are medicines used to treat or prevent bacterial infection.
These are used to treat viruses that affect the skin, such as herpes or shingles.
These tablets, such as Prednisolone, may be used to treat skin conditions that arise as part of an autoimmune condition. Corticosteroids come in many different forms, including creams, but the doctor will need to advise if a patient should continue with any other steroid treatment.
These medications prevent the body from producing histamine which causes an allergic reaction. They are occasionally used to help the treatment of itching.
Who is Treatment with Tablets Suitable For?
Tablets will be used by almost everyone during the course of their life, but some are not suitable for people with certain medical conditions; or not suitable under certain circumstances.
You can consult your GP or your pharmacist to ask if it’s suitable to use a tablet to treat a skin condition.
What is the Process of Treatment with Tablets?
Usually tablets should be taken with liquid, but some medicines can only be taken with water, as other fluids may interfere with the drugs.
Always ensure you follow the directions in the drug leaflet of your prescription tablets very carefully and note any contraindications – some medications should not be taken with others, or with certain foods. It is also advisable to review the drug leaflet to apprise yourself of adverse side-effects.
Depending on whether you’re being prescribed an oral medication, or if you are taking tablets available over the counter, your doctor or pharmacist will tell you whether you should take your medication on an empty stomach, or before or after eating. It is essential that you adhere to this advice since food in the stomach and intestine could interfere with the medication dissolving and being absorbed into the bloodstream.
Take your tablets only as indicated by the doctor or pharmacist – do not exceed the dosage prescribed, or it could cause serious complications.
Unless otherwise advised by the doctor, do not crush, break or chew any tablets, as many can be long-acting, and so have a special coating on them that delays the delivery of the medication.
Only use oral medication for the condition it was prescribed for, or, in the case of over the counter treatments, a condition listed on the product package.
Never share prescription medication with others, and make sure you adhere to the advice of your dermatologist or GP on how frequently you should take the medication, and when you need to stop treatment.
Certain types of prescription medication will require that you are closely monitored by the doctor, so you may need to schedule routine appointments or investigations like blood tests to ensure you are being treated safely.
If you have trouble swallowing your medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist, as it may be possible to get a liquid form of the medication, or a pill that is smaller and easier to swallow.
What are the Risks and Complications?
Because there are so many conditions that might require treatment with oral medications, and each carry their own side-effects, it is beneficial to read the drug leaflet (or product packaging, if using over the counter treatments.)
The dermatologist will advise you of any risks or complications with oral medications during your consultation.
With medications prescribed daily, one risk is forgetting to take them, which could cause complications. Some patients choose to set a reminder on their mobile phones.
Should you experience any adverse side-effects, it is essential to contact the doctor and it may be necessary to report it to the clinic or your GP, especially if it is a prescription medication.
What is the Recovery Time and Outcome?
The duration and success of treatment with oral medications depending on the condition being treated, and its severity.
The dermatologist will advise you about what you can expect from treatment with oral medications during your consultation.