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Eliminate All OTC's From Your Family's Medicine Chest? Never!

I appreciate the natural health industry and I am aware of its problems and limitations. I want what you want – the best answers to health problems available. Unfortunately as you've seen, other factors are at work that limit our answers. In some situations the answers we're given are bad for us.

When it comes to OTC problems, we often treat our symptoms. That is understandable. A cough is causing our chest to get more sore every few minutes. A sore throat keeps up from being able to swallow. A drippy nose, or a congested nose, keeps us from being able to sleep.

Popping a pill or swallowing a spoonful of medicine does often mask a symptom of an illness. And in doing so we often feel better and can better get the rest we need to get well again. Sometimes something as simple as a minor headache keeps us from focusing on important work we have to do. Perhaps atmospheric pressure or work pressure caused the headache but there is little we can always do about things like that. So masking the headache with a pain reliever gets us through the day.

You won't hear me arguing too much there. As you might imagine, it's my goal never to take such a pain reliever! But guess what? I do take them. Not often. But I do. And in taking them I know I am not fixing whatever caused my headache.

The same goes for cough syrups and the other OTC's. I avoid them. I try never to take them. I realize my headache didn't appear because I didn't get enough aspirin and I realize my cough isn't there because I didn't take cough syrup. The source of my problem at times such as those isn't pertinent. In life we sometimes need to mask a symptom to get through the day and it is okay as long as it's a minor symptom. Also, eliminating a symptom is great if you're also taking steps to eliminate the originating problem. For example, if you are allergic to gluten and have moved to a gluten-free diet, but some slipped in causing you problems, you'll want to mask the gluten-allergic symptom if possible while your system eliminates the gluten from your body.

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