A glance at our stash of medications would undoubtedly cause one to wonder if this is a house of hypochondriacs. There are easily 30+ vials of prescription drugs in our linen/medicine closet (yes, we have to have a closet for our drugs, there isn't a medicine cabinet in the country large enough to hold them all). Of course, I don't take all these medications currently; most of the vials are half full of pills that didn't have the expected therapeutic benefits or had,a slew of side effects that easily outweighed any therapeutic benefits. I seem to specialize in being among the <1% of patients that experience the "rare side effects" you hear about on the commercials for different drugs.
Prior to developing scleroderma, I rarely took medicine. This was largely due to the fact that I was rarely sick. Whenever I developed a fever, I was a big believer in sweating it out. I climbed into bed underneath every blanket I owned and sweat all night. Usually by morning I was fine. Of course, I might have been fine without the blanket torture, but I held fast to my cure-all approach to fevers.
The only other drug I remember taking with any frequency was Motrin. I began taking Motrin in high school. A fellow student was the daughter of a pharmacist and she had these "wonder pills" for menstrual cramps. If you were having a rough day you just needed to find her and ask for one and she handed it over, free of charge. I have no idea why she didn't charge us, I was have easily forked over my lunch money for one of those pills on a bad day. All this was occurring about the time the Motrin became available over the counter in 200 mg tables (1984), but since none of us knew what drug we were taking, we just kept going to our friend. None of us was going to own up to our parents that we had a drug supplier at school so we remained pretty ill-informed about the identity of the "wonder drug." I finally figured in out that it was Motrin in my college pharmacology class, four years later.
This paints a picture of how innocent we were. Yes, there was a drug dealer on campus who gave out medicine for free to her friends with cramps. That was as hard core as we ever got with drugs. Looking back, it was still pretty stupid of us. We could have unwittingly taken something harmful. But I still think the story is kind of cute.
Of all the meds I have taken over the years, Motrin is still my favorite: it works for fevers and aches and pains. That covers a lot of ground in the world of symptom management. My kids are already hooked on it for their fevers and growing pains (which Amelia has a lot of these days). I suppose it's not too bad as far as addictions go.