What You Need To Know About Your Prescriptions

Last week was rough on my poor nose. After excessive bleeding (ewwwwww) my sadistic doctor thought the best way to help me out and become my BFF was to shove lots of random things up my nasal passage. Don’t worry, it’s not you, this tale does sound like a bad prison porno. Well, my doc wasn’t going about winning my lifelong friendship until he pulled out the prescription pad and said “I am writing you a prescription for painkillers.” My eyes brightened considerably. Not that I am a huge drug addict, but with a nose shoved full of who knows what getting larger by the second, and a temper tantrum increasing by the second, painkillers seemed like a brilliant idea. In his defense, he did warn me that I should only take Vicodin once I was in bed. Did I listen…oh no.I arrived home far too embarrassed to go back to The Frisky offices (did I mention the size of my nose?) but convinced I could do just a bit more writing. As I actually was in a lot of pain and I do have a tendency towards theatrics, I popped one pill. I was fine. I was great. I was…high? I wisely stepped away from the computer and sat down on the couch. Besides a quick episode of trying to fix the freezer, I was pretty good at not getting into trouble. Why you may ask? I have experience with people not listening to doctors instructions or labels on medicine bottles. While the funniest thing I have ever seen in life was my mom accidentally tripping on ambien, there are very serious consequences to taking meds without thinking. Here are a few steps you should take each time you are about to pop a pill so you don’t end up.

  • Listen To The Doc: I know I unfairly give my doctor a hard time. I am a mahoosive wimp and whimper and whine the second I see a needle or any medical instrument. I will save my reaction to gyno’s stirrups for another post. Still, your doctor went to medical school for a billion years, so if he/she should give you any instructions, especially about prescriptions, listen. If you have a concern or think you are being inappropriately diagnosed, speak up. You should ask your doctor questions, they aren’t there to look pretty. Unless of course you manage to get yourself onto the fictional Grey’s Anatomy, in which case you definitely took too many happy pills.
  • Read The Tiny Labels On The Bottle:
  • You have your medicine and are almost cured! Yay! Now, before your swallow really read the warning labels. I always thought the warning labels were silly. Obviously they were just slapped on for the .5% of the population who had some bizarre gene. Guess what? They’re not! My personal theory: the bigger the warning label the bigger the chance the bad thing will happen to you.

  • Do Not Operate Heavy Machinery Or Smooch Strangers: In theory, this category should go into the one above, except that bottles which warn you not to operate heavy machinery have crazy consequences. I am talking hallucinations, sleep walking, sleep eating, sleep driving…sleep sex. Not even kidding.
  • Make Sure You Are Taking The Right Medication: I am sure your doc and your pharmacist are fab. But, always better to be on the safe side. Human error tends to rear it’s ugly head somewhere between poor doctors handwriting and overworked and beleaguered pharmacists. Double check that the medicine you are prescribed is the medicine in the bottle. Maybe the name is different because your pharmacy gave you the generic form of the drug, or they gave you the wrong drug. This advice is probably overkill, but why risk it?
  • Pay Attention To The Dosage: I know you are in pain, but the Tylenol bottle says to take two pills, not three. You might be a big girl, but you are not a horse. Over dosing is a serious danger. If you feel the need to play doctor, take it to the bedroom, not the medicine cupboard.