Are We Being Overmedicated With Prescription Drugs?
A woman walks into the doctor’s office complaining about the lack of sleep she’s been getting. He prescribes a sleeping pill. She then goes on to describe how she’s been a little stressed and anxious. He gives her a prescription for an anti-anxiety medication. Before the visit is over, she tells him she has a headache. Out comes the prescription pad and she suddenly find herself holding a prescription for a migraine medicine. What in the world are doctors doing with prescription drugs these days?
The Real Story
While the above scenario may be a bit exaggerated, it definitely hits on a serious issue — thousands upon thousands of people are being overmedicated each and every day. Maybe the woman in our scenario really did need the prescription drugs the doctor prescribed for you — or maybe she didn’t.
Perhaps the woman in question hasn’t been getting sleep due to a poor mattress and pillow. Maybe her anxiety and stress are coming from having to manage a family and career without adequate sleep. And maybe the headache she told the doctor about came from all of the above. If that’s the case, she’s going to start taking three separate prescription drugs for absolutely no reason. Not a pleasant thought, is it?
Do Your Research
Whenever your doctor writes you a new prescription, ask exactly what the prescription is for and ask about the side effects associated with the medication. If you feel the prescription may not be right for you, let your doctor know. This is your health we’re talking about. You can’t be afraid of asking questions or making your thoughts and opinions known.
Make Sure There’s Not an Over-the-Counter Solution
Sometimes doctors will prescribe costly prescription drugs when there are over-the-counter medications that could provide their patients with effective results. Not only are over-the-counter drugs less expensive than prescription medications, they tend to have fewer side effects. If your doctor writes a prescription, ask if there is an over-the-counter alternative that could give you the same benefits.
Doctors are Human Too
Above all things, remember your doctor is not a god. Yes, doctors are educated and knowledgeable people, but they too can make mistakes. If you have any reason to believe you’ve been given prescription drugs you really don’t need, contact your doctor immediately and discuss the situation.