How Well Do You Know Your Medicine Cabinet?

We live in a self-prescribing society where many of us like to self-diagnose our symptoms and treat them with over-the-counter (OTC) medications. According to the Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA), without OTC drugs, approximately 60 million Americans would not seek treatment for their illness.


The CHPA also estimates that U.S. households spend about $338 a year on OTC products.  Although OTC medicine is convenient and easy to use, many people may not know about the potentially dangerous side effects that can result in using such medicines.


How well do you know the OTC products in your medicine cabinet?


  1. Pain Relievers


If you check out any “must have in your medicine cabinet” list, pain relievers usually make the top of the list. An OTC pain reliever is either ibuprofen (Advil), acetaminophen (Tylenol), or naproxen (Aleve).


Although these types of pain relievers seem less dangerous than pain medication prescribed by a doctor, they can cause an increase in blood pressure, kidney damage, and gastrointestinal issues. Always talk with your doctor before taking a seemingly harmless pain reliever.


  1. Cold Medicine


Although there’s no tried and true cure to getting rid of a cold, many people rely on cold medicine that often contains acetaminophen, dextromethorphan, doxylamine, and pseudoephedrine.


One of the biggest dangers of OTC cold medicine is simply failing to read or follow the directions. Cold medicines should never be mixed with other pain relievers, like acetaminophen, because one could end up taking more than the daily dose without knowing.


  1. Vitamins and Herbal Supplements


Vitamins and herbal supplements are a great way to fill in any “gaps” that may be missing from your diet. Some supplements are designed to be a “safer” remedy for similar medications. It’s important to note that most vitamins and herbal supplements are not regulated by the FDA.


Many people who take these kinds of OTC products have little knowledge on the ingredients and may mix them with other OTC medications; the results can be dangerous. Take the supplement St. John’s Wort (for anxiety) and cold medicine. Mixing the two have been known to have a fatal outcome.


  1. Laxatives


Some individuals take laxatives to help stay regular, and while this seemingly safe OTC drug is used by young and old alike, it can cause dehydration and kidney issues due to improper dosing.

Considerations Before Taking


While there are hundreds of OTC drugs that are safe and effective, it’s always important to know what you are taking before you try to treat any symptoms. Dangerous side effects are more likely to occur when people don’t read the directions and don’t give or take the proper dosage.


Additionally, some adverse effects happen because people don’t know enough about their health, such as allergies, blood pressure, or any underlying issues. Even if you would rather take OTC drugs than prescription medications, it’s a good idea to have a check-up with your doctor and always tell him or her what OTC medicines you take.

Benefits of Physical Therapy & How Can it Help You

Physical Therapy

If you’ve been injured in any way, shape or form, physical therapy can help get your body back on track. It’s designed around your specific needs as a patient in order to help reduce pain, increase function and prevent further injury. Each exercise is based uniquely around your injury and what your body needs to strengthen and heal.

If you’re considering physical therapy for yourself or for someone you know as a mode of healing, check out these benefits and see how it could work for you.

Physical therapy can improve mobility and motion.

If you’ve been injured, and movement is difficult or painful for you, you could be in for a pretty uncomfortable way to live your life. Physical therapy after an injury can help improve your quality of life simply by allowing you to move comfortably in your own body.

Whether it’s a passive modality like heat or ice, electrical stimulation or ultrasound, or active exercise and stretching, physical therapy can be incredibly valuable in helping you gain mobility.

Movement and mobility are both so important in order to stay physically active and independent; physical activity in general is necessary to prevent obesity.

It can help you to avoid having surgery or using prescription drugs.

Of course there are situations where surgery or prescription drug use is crucial to fix whatever issue a person may be having. If you’ve been injured and are hoping to avoid surgery though, physically therapy in many cases can assist in preventing surgery from being needed.

Low back pain, meniscus tears and rotator cuff tears are among the many things physical therapy can help heal without surgery. Not only is it much less invasive, it is also more cost effective.

PT can help you recover after undergoing surgery.

One of the best things you can do for your body after you have surgery is to keep up with physical therapy. This will allow you to keep your body moving and maintain flexibility and range-of-motion. Simple stretching and other forms of physical therapy can help relieve a great deal of tightness and pain after surgery.

Did you get hurt on the job?

According to the attorneys at Hasner Law, if you get injured on the job, you’ll probably be entitled to workers’ compensation. Workers’ compensation should cover any medical expenses, will make up for pay you lost out on by missing work, and in some cases will even help cover rehabilitation expenses like physical therapy.