If you have completed a programme of rehabilitation, you will want to make sure that alcohol and drugs are avoided at all costs. You may have been used to numbing your pain with drugs and alcohol, but how are you going to treat common medical problems now that you have cut medication from your life?
You may have lived your life believing that there is a pill for every ailment. TV and radio advertisements will promote specific pills for all types of pain from headaches to period pains to backache. Most people are of the opinion that as soon as they feel an ache or pain, they have to reach for painkillers. However, medication should be a last resort, especially when it comes to treating minor ailments at home. While there are times when medication is necessary and the benefits outweigh the risks to your sobriety, you should try to adopt the practice of only taking medication when absolutely necessary. There are other ways to treat minor health problems that should always be tried first.
No matter what kind of ailment you have, it is better to avoid medication if possible. Those with allergies often reach for antihistamines as they are led to believe that this is the best response. Allergy medication containing antihistamines or alcohol should be avoided, even though they can counteract the allergic response. This advice is only for mild allergies as those with severe allergic reactions should take whatever is necessary to treat the condition.
One of the biggest problems for those in recovery is actually identifying if they do indeed have allergies. Alcoholism, for example, can mimic the symptoms of many allergies, including a runny nose, watery eyes, and dry skin. Nevertheless, if you are sure you have an allergy, it is best to avoid the thing that is causing it instead of taking medication to treat it afterwards. That being said, it can be difficult to identify what is causing it, but if you put your thinking cap on you should be able to get to the root of the problem. Common triggers can be pet hair, certain foods, dust mites, pollen, and mould. If you do have an allergy and cannot control it by avoiding allergens, it is a good idea to speak to your doctor about appropriate treatment.
Arthritis can be very painful, so it is common to take medication for this condition. Nonetheless, mood-altering drugs should be avoided. There are a number of non-drug treatments you could try, such as applying heat to the area. Hot baths or heat pads are helpful, and exercise may also improve the condition. Some swear by a change in diet and say that a gluten-free or vegetarian diet works wonders when it comes to reducing symptoms. There are also topical creams that can be rubbed into the affected joint.
The common cold is something that affects most people at least once during the year, and there is all manner of treatments that promise to help. The truth is that this virus typically needs to work its way out of your system. Treatments may help to relieve the symptoms, but they will not cure a cold. Antibiotics do not work for colds so should not be taken, and antihistamines, nasal sprays and any drops containing alcohol should be avoided.
Lozenges can help a sore throat or a cough and a humidifier may also help to clear a blocked nose. Hot drinks with honey and lemon are also helpful, and you can use vapour rub to clear your nose, too.
When it comes to minor ailments, it is always better to try non-drug treatments and only ever use medication as a last resort and when the benefits outweigh the risks.