Open the average American medicine cabinet and you will find a patent (over the counter) medicine to fit just about any ailment that plagues the human condition- nausea and indigestion, headache, fever, itching- you name it. We all need something from time to time to relieve these kinds of common symptoms that cause us discomfort.


It is perfectly okay if you find yourself using these kinds of drugs infrequently to relieve the occasional headache, ache or pain, or upset stomach- no problem. If you find yourself daily reaching for a bottle of pills with diminishing results maybe the answer no longer lies in taking pills. Unfortunately most of us will return to the drug store for a different pill that may work temporarily but in the long run we are only masking symptoms, symptoms that may need more attention than we are willing to give them.


Minor symptoms are the body’s way of getting in touch with us. The message is always the same despite the fact that it may come wrapped in a different set of symptoms. The message being that we are pushing ourselves further and further beyond our balance point. If we do not pay attention things may worsen to the point of more severe illness or injury.


There are two real problems with the chronic overuse of patent medicines. The use of little medicines leads to the use of big medicine, prescription medicines that are so powerful the body cannot chemically take them apart and side effects that may lead to other problems. The use of one big medicine can and may times does lead to the use of others to offset the side effects caused by the original medicine. Given all this I personally and fully understand the need for big medicines having used antibiotics for a lengthy period to purge my body of the Lyme disease bacterium. Sometimes our choices are not what we would like and we have no choice but this is not usually the case.


The aches and pains of everyday life will always be with us and worsen as we age, all the more reason to address minor symptoms as they occur. In today’s world of high tech supplements, natural botanicals and vitamins available there is no reason to reach for a patent medicine. Wouldn’t you prefer to use a natural product that will not only relieve your symptoms but also helps your body heal itself? 


If you are unsure of where to start a trip to the health food store for a book or two should prove to be helpful. Start with the basics and don’t be afraid to ask questions.


Self-examination of how we are living our life and just how far off of center we have become is never easy. It requires change that we almost always resist and never like. The choice is always yours, but there’s a hefty price to pay at the end when we choose to simply ignore. Till next time, Rebecca