We know it can be tricky to implement a daily habit like taking a PrEP pill each and every day (or any medication for that matter!), so we wanted to offer you a few tips to help:
Tip #1: Make it a part of your daily routine.
If you know there is already something you do every day, try incorporating your PrEP pills into your routine flow too. For example:
- If you wake up and immediately make coffee, keep your PrEP next to your coffee grinder.
- If you wash your face and do your skin care routine every evening, have your PrEP bottle close at hand with your moisturize.
- If you get in bed and read a book each night, put your PrEP on top of whatever you’re reading at the time.
Everyone’s routine is different, but it can be helpful to incorporate your daily meds into things that you already do.
Tip #2: If you feel comfortable leaving your medication out, put it where you’ll always see it.
If you don’t have a specific routine necessarily, you can also put your PrEP somewhere you know you’ll see it each and every day -- maybe that’s right next to your toothbrush or on top of your dresser or nightstand.
If you know where you look every day, seeing the bottle can be a great reminder to pop your pills.
Tip #3: Set a daily alarm on your phone / calendar.
If you have a phone that lets you set an alarm or create a reminder, try setting one for the same time each day. For privacy, you can always name the alarm something vague or funny.
It can be helpful to travel with some of your pills in a cute case, so that whenever your alarm goes off, you have your medication nearby no matter where you are!
Tip #4: Using a weekly pill organizer.
If you have trouble remembering whether you’ve taken a pill each day, you can use a pill organizer with the days of the week on it. That way, if the Tuesday box is empty, you'll know that you're all set until Wesneday.
Tip #5: Leave yourself little notes.
Sometimes a classic post-it note can be one of the most helpful reminders. Try writing, “Did you take your PrEP?” or “Have you taken your pill today?” on a post-it and putting somewhere you’re likely to see it, such as the fridge or in your bathroom mirror. This can help to keep you consistent.
Tip #6: Use a reminder app.
There are apps made just to remind you to take your medication. Here are a few that are free:
- Medisafe (iPhone or Android)
- Also has appointment reminders which can help you keep track of when you need to get your labs done
- You can put in a reminder for more than one medication which can be helpful for people who take multiple prescriptions
- Includes a interaction checker so you can make sure it’s safe to take your medications together
- Includes videos to learn about the different medications you’re taking
- Every Dose, Every Day app (iPhone or Android)
- Also has appointment reminders
- Includes an option for tracking lab results for those living with HIV
- MyMedSchedule Plus (iPhone or Android)
- Can have reminders for more than one medication
- Includes educational information about your meds
Tip #7: Sign up for text reminders.
Text ‘MEDS’ to 877877 for daily text message reminders. You’ll be asked how many times a day you take your medicine and what time you’d like to get a reminder text. *Carrier rates for texting will apply*
Don’t stress if you forget a dose!
If you’re a few hours late, take the dose you missed as soon as you remember, but if it’s almost time for your next dose, just take your next pill.
Remember: Don’t double up.
While you should try your hardest to keep up with PrEP daily, it is generally forgiving and still effective if you're remembering at least 5 or more doses each week.
FOLX is currently able to prescribe daily PrEP and the process begins here. For existing FOLX members interested in adding a PrEP prescription to their plan, reach out to your clinician through your Athena patient portal or reach out to our member advocates at firstname.lastname@example.org. And for those who want to know more, read up on all things sexual health here, and feel free to reach out to us at email@example.com.