A transdermal patch is a patch you attach to your skin to take medication. The drug is absorbed into your body over time through the patch. Transdermal patches are easy to use, but it is important to use them correctly for them to work well.
Here is a step-by-step guide to help you:
- Make sure to read all the instructions that come with your patch. The patch instructions will tell you where to place the patch on your body, how long you should wear the patch, and when to remove and replace the patch.
- Clean your hands using soap and water or hand sanitizer.
- If you have an old patch on your body that contains the same drug, you will need to remove it before applying a new one. To do this, start peeling back an edge of the patch with your fingers. Once you have a grip, gently pull off the rest of the patch. Once the patch is off, fold it in half, so the sticky sides are pressed together. Then, throw it away in a closed trash can.
- The doctor will tell you where to put the patch, but if you have to do it yourself, the drug’s label or package should provide insight into where to place it. It’s best to choose a clean, dry area of skin that is not oily, irritated or cut. If you can, avoid putting the patch on skin exposed to the sun.
- Wash the skin with warm water and either a gentle cleanser or just water. Avoid scented soaps, rinse the skin, and dry it with a soft towel. You should have successfully removed any dirt, oils, lotions, or powders from the area.
- To open the package, tear it open or use scissors. Be careful not to damage the patch itself. If the patch is damaged, do not use it. Instead, dispose of it as directed in step 3.
- To apply the patch, remove the packaging and the protective liner. Be careful not to touch the sticky side of the patch. Apply the patch to the skin, pressing down firmly.
- To apply the patch, remove the protective liner and place the adhesive side of the patch on the skin. Apply gentle pressure to the patch area to ensure it is firmly attached.
- Gently press down on the patch’s edges with your fingers. Make sure there are no bumps or folds in the patch.
- After you use the patch, dispose of it properly by throwing it away in a closed trash can. This will ensure that the patch doesn’t accidentally end up somewhere it’s not supposed to be.
- To remove any medication from your hands, wash them well with soap and water.
One Last Tip
If a patch does not stick to your skin, do not use tape to secure it. Dispose of the patch and use a new one. It is normal if your skin is red or irritated after removing a patch. However, if the skin does not start to heal in one to three days, you should call a doctor.
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