A National Directory of Drug Treatment Centers and Alcohol Treatment Centers, Therapists and Specialists. A free, simple directory providing assistance and guidance for those seeking help regarding alcohol addiction, drug addiction, dependency and many other conditions that affect the mind, body and soul.
Call 800-580-9104 to speak with an alcohol or drug abuse counselor.

Cold meds may have serious side effects

There are more than 800 over-the-counter cold and cough medications. It is a huge and profitable industry, with an excess of $2 billion spent each year nationwide.

Because they are sold without a prescription, many people assume the medications are “safe.” These medications are associated with potentially serious side effects. Many products contain multiple substances including a decongestant, cough suppressant, antihistamine, and/or fever reducer/analgesic. Complications after using decongestants include elevated blood pressure (those with hypertension should not take over-the-counter decongestants), increased heart rate (causing palpitations and anxiety), slow heart rate, seizures, stroke and heart attack.

Many cough and cold preparations even include antihistamines such as chlorphen-iramine and brompheniramine, although histamine has not been shown to contribute to the symptoms in the common cold. This seems to be their attempt at the shotgun approach, trying everything.

Side effects of antihistamines include drowsiness, increased heart rate, blurred vision, agitation and seizures. Dextromethorphan (for cough) has been associated with stupor (don’t take it if you are going to drive), coma, or the other end of the spectrum, hyperexcitability.

Tylenol and other medications containing its active ingredient, acetaminophen, can be highly toxic. In a study at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, acetaminophen is the No. 1 cause of acute liver failure.

Patients treated for acetaminophen overdose were divided into two groups; accidental overdose versus intentional overdose. Surprisingly, the group who accidentally took too much acetaminophen faired worse than the group who where attempting suicide.

The accidental overdosers fared worse because a much higher proportion were heavy drinkers. Heavy drinking changes the liver’s functioning and makes it much more susceptible to suffer the toxicity of acetaminophen. Those who take more than an occasional acetaminophen should not drink alcohol because of the increased risk of liver damage.

Patients with liver and kidney disease also should exercise caution in taking acetaminophen.

One of the authors of the Parkland report suggests that people consider taking 2 grams of acetaminophen a day as the maximum dose, as opposed to the 4 grams currently recommended by most manufacturers (a single oral dose of 325 to 650 mg every four to six hours for an adult). Relatively small overdoses of acetaminophen have been blamed for liver damage and even deaths in children.

Always remember, medicine sold over the counter is not completely safe and may cause side effects and toxicity.
__________
source: news-journalonline.com

More Treatment & Detox Articles

Protection for Smokers

The new Congress can secure an early victory by giving the FDA authority over tobacco. EVEN BARACK Obama — he of the compulsive exercise regimen and workout- video-worthy physique — hasn’t been able to escape the clutches of nicotine. The president-elect, whose struggle to give up cigarettes is well documented, still sneaks an occasional smoke…..

Continue reading

Binge drinking best tackled through personal networks

Addressing personal friendship networks is the best way to tackle the spread of binge drinking in the UK, the Advertising Association has found. It come in the wake of a new ad campaign wave from the Home Office which aims to deal with what is perceived as a growing national menace. The ads contain shocking….

Continue reading

Program is in the works to keep teens away from alcohol

Tarrant County mental health professionals and advocates are drafting a pilot program aimed at treating teens who are slipping into alcoholism. The proposed High School Alcohol Diversion Program, modeled after college programs, would allow teens with alcohol violations to stay at their schools instead of being sent to alternative schools. That would help prevent them….

Continue reading

First Nations must find ways to curb alcohol use

Alcohol-related deaths among First Nations in B.C. are a staggering five times higher than for other British Columbians, says a prominent First Nations doctor, who argues aboriginal leaders need to start working on an alcohol strategy to save lives. Dr. Evan Adams, aboriginal health physician adviser in the office of the Provincial Health Officer, believes….

Continue reading

Reformed addict tells of his life as an alcoholic

It’s Been two years since a drop of alcohol last passed Neil Kimberlin’s lips. But despite his teetotal lifestyle the 58-year-old openly admits he is still is, and always will be, an alcoholic. At the height of his addiction Neil downed a whole litre of whisky every single day as well as drinking 14 pints….

Continue reading