Good Medicine Cabinet Advice

Discussion in 'Health and Lifestyle' started by Adam's Apple, Feb 23, 2005.

  1. Adam's Apple
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    Adam's Apple Senior Member

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    Give your medicine cabinet an annual checkup

    http://www.NewsAndOpinion.com | (KRT) You're good about getting your teeth cleaned regularly and making appointments for the yearly physical.

    Don't forget the medicine cabinet needs an annual checkup, too.

    "Once a year is a good idea to get rid of anything that is old or needs to be replaced," says Theresa Christiansen, pharmacy manager at Woodwinds Retail Pharmacy in Woodbury, Minn.

    We asked four medical experts for their suggestions on what items to stock, where to store them and when to pitch them.

    The medicine cabinet is the worst place to store medications. The heat and humidity of the bathroom can increase the rate the medications degrade, says Dr. Thomas Lacker, a professor in the College of Pharmacy at the University of Minnesota. Rather, seek out a cool, dry place, such as a kitchen cabinet, out of the reach of children.

    When medications expire, it's time to toss them. Flush them down the toilet.

    As with all over-the-counter medications, read the labels and check with your pharmacist when you're picking items for infants, children or pregnant women. Also be aware of possible interactions with other medications. Here are some other suggestions for a well-stocked medicine cabinet:

    Pain/fever: Acetaminophen - like Tylenol - for mild pain and fever. If you have liver disease, talk to your doctor before using it, as too much can be toxic. Older people may keep nonenteric coated aspirin on hand, in case of a heart attack. Children and teens should not use aspirin, due to the risk of Reye's syndrome.

    Pain relief, part II: Stock generic ibuprofen - like Advil - for inflammation and pain due to acute joint injuries. One caution: Do not take ibuprofen with certain medicines, including Plavix (a drug that prevents strokes and heart attacks).

    Diarrhea: It usually goes away on its own, unless there's an underlying medical condition. In clinical studies, Kaopectate has not been shown to be effective in decreasing diarrhea. Try Fiberall, Fibercon, Konsyl Fiber or Citrucel.

    Constipation: Citrucel and Unifiber work here. But people should boost their intake of water or fruit juices, exercise and add fiber to the diet. (Coffee does not count toward the water consumption goal.) One caution: Don't use bulk laxatives if you're mostly in bed or if you don't drink much liquid. If these medications don't work, try senna tablets or bisacodyl tablets.

    Sore throat: Try gargling with lukewarm water with salt (1-3 teaspoons table salt per glass) 2-4 times daily or as needed. Or you could stock an oral painkiller like acetaminophen or anesthetic lozenges like Spec-T, Cepacol or Sucrets. Or you could have throat spray such as Cheracol or children's Vicks Chloraseptic.

    Cough: Oral decongestant or cough suppressant such as dextromethorphan. Or a timed-release cough syrup like Delsym.

    Stuffy nose: Sodium chloride/saline nasal spray (such as Ocean spray), zinc gluconate solution (like Nasal Ease with zinc) or an oral decongestant with pseudoephedrine (like Drixoral, Sudafed or Dimetapp). Limit use to 3-5 days.

    Heartburn, belching: Antacids containing aluminum and magnesium, such as Maalox Plus or Mylanta; or alginic acid, such as Gaviscon. Antacids with low sodium or low potassium are also available. If antacid alone doesn't work, try Zantac or Pepcid. If those don't work, try Prilosec OTC.

    Minor burns and sunburn: Topical anesthetic like benzocaine. Do not use products with camphor, menthol or ichthammol on the burned area.

    Stuffy or runny nose or sneezing: Try an oral antihistamine or saline nasal spray.

    Sleep aids: Older people should not use Benadryl, which can cause mental confusion, constipation or dry eyes. Younger people can probably use Benadryl, but know that it can cause urinary retention, which may lead to urinary tract infections.

    First-aid kit: Bandages of assorted sizes; gauze; antiseptic wipes; sharp scissors with rounded tips; medical tape; tweezers; disposable, instant-activating cold packs.

    Poisoning: You can have syrup of ipecac on hand, but call the Poison Center before using it.

    Multivitamins: Adults 65 or older benefit from multivitamins, but know that the dietary supplement industry is loosely regulated. Look for name brands and companies you trust.

    Wound care: Antibacterial ointments like neosporin or a general triple antibiotic ointment.

    Thermometer: Basic digital thermometers are under $5. The kind you stick in your ear run between $50 and $70.

    c2005 St. Paul Pioneer Press, distributed by Knight Ridder/Tribune Information Services
     
  2. Joz
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    Joz Senior Member

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    Pretty much have all this stuff. Need to do a really good first-aid kit tho'.

    As far as a sore throat, an ENT once gave Mom this recipe. Two TBSP of glycerin, 2 TBSP of liquid benedryl. Mix it up,...gargle. It's wonderful. Just be careful not to swallow the mixture. It won't hurt you but the glycerin might loosen you up a bit.
     
  3. Adam's Apple
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    Adam's Apple Senior Member

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    Thanks for the tip on treating a sore throat. I will try it the next time I get one. Check with your local hospital to see if they might sell first aid kits. A fews years ago our hospital was selling great first aid kits for $30.00 as a fund raiser. My wife bought one and kept it in the trunk of her car. When we sold the car a couple of years later, she didn't think about the first aid kit, so it went with the car.
     
  4. Joz
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    Joz Senior Member

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    Hopefully the person who got the car won't have to use it, but at least they're prepared! I don't have any stuff like that for an emergency. No flares, no kit, and I spend an awful lot of time on the road. Better get in gear, right? I do carry bandaids in my wallet. :) Taught my kids to do the same thing. Came in handy when Aaron was running sound for the Easy Rider Tour...and the boob contests.
     
  5. krisy
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    krisy Senior Member

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    Sounds good except for the Tylenol. I know it's should be o.k. if you take the right dose,and I will take it on occasion,but it doesn't work too well. I refuse to give it to my kids after seeing a story about a mom that accidentally gave her daughter too much and the girl died within a day or two. I like Ibuprofen myself-it works great!!!
     
  6. Joz
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    Joz Senior Member

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    Tylenol or the eqivilent builds up in your system. It shouldn't be taken any closer than the 4 hour reccomendation.
     
  7. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    Wouldn't boob contests require some other " special " treatment?? :p:
     
  8. krisy
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    krisy Senior Member

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    Boob contests?!!!!! :teeth:
     
  9. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    LOL gonna have to ask Joz about that one ! :boobies:
     
  10. Joz
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    Joz Senior Member

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    Aaron ran sound for the Sonny Moorman Group when Sonny did The Easy Rider Tour. Aaron got quite the education around those biker events. They would hold contests such as 'The Wet T-Shirt'. One night a young lady took off her shirt but then wasn't allowed back up on stage, topless. Ah Ha! Aaron reached into his wallet, pulled out the bandaids, applied them to the nipples :D and back on stage she went.
     

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