Is There A Solution For The Great Medication Debate?

We all want to live the healthiest lifestyle possible. We exercise, eat right, and try to opt for healthy solutions. And, let’s be honest; we don’t do it for fun. We do it because we care about our health, especially as we get older. We only get one body, after all, and it’s important to keep it going for as long as possible.

It’s thanks to this drive for a healthier life that many of us visit our doctors when there’s a problem. We trust that our health professionals will give us what we need to get better.

But, there’s a small issue with that thinking. The medication epidemic in America suggests that prescriptions are making us sicker.

Medication epidemic in the U.S.

Are prescription medications helping or hindering a healthier life? Photo by ParentingPatch (Own work) (CC BY-SA 3.0), via Wikimedia Commons.

To explain, let’s look at the facts. America’s pharmaceutical industry is, in short, massive. To gain some idea of just how huge, consider that around 59% of Americans are on medication. That’s 3 in 5 people who are taking pills on a regular basis throughout the country. Often, patients take a myriad of pills for one condition.

No one’s claiming that prescriptions are a bad thing. We’re all, I’m sure, grateful that we have access to such advanced care. So, where does the problem lie? Let’s be honest; statistics like the ones mentioned above are definitely a problem. For the most part, the worry lies in the medications we’re using, and the side effects they bring.

Side effects of medications

Consider the addictive nature of many pills. Pexels (CC0) image.

Many of the pills we take are to kill pain. Which is fine, until you consider the addictive nature of many pain medications. Add the fact that many have side effects worse than the ailment we’re taking them for, and we have an issue on our hands. Side effects of medications can range from nausea, all the way up to increased risk of heart disease. Plus, pills can make us feel pretty rotten, especially if we’re taking a cocktail.

Which leaves us asking the question, why? Why have things gotten so bad in America, when other countries struggle to get prescriptions at all? The answer is, of course, money. It’s no news that the pharmaceutical industry is booming, and it’s all about cash. To get into the issue deeper, watch Prescription Thugs, a documentary currently on Netflix. Here, you’ll learn about the shocking workings of the industry. But, rest assured that money is at the root of our focus on prescriptions.

There’s no denying, of course, that some medicines should always be readily available. As you can see from this article on cnn.com, HIV medication is adding years onto sufferers’ lives. And, options like the treatment found at ExperienceIbogaine.com are helping countless addicts break their habits. So, it’s not all bad news for medicine.

Perhaps all this problem needs is regulation. Separating life-saving medication from the pills we’ve all become reliant on would make a huge difference. Sanctions on the industry could stop companies from benefiting from painkiller sales and so on. Whatever route we take, it’s past time we found a solution to the issue.

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17 thoughts on “Is There A Solution For The Great Medication Debate?

  1. I think, Christy, that in many ways first world, modern lives are more stress filled than those of our ancestors and of people in less developed countries (read as jobs). Since I started my current job as a chartered accountant nearly 20 years ago, things have changed significantly. I now have a cell phone and a laptop with emails coming through to both and 4G. This results in work never ending and people being expected to be available 24/7. This holiday is the first time in 10 years I am not monitoring emails as I really needed a break.

  2. Well said. Mostly every one is captured by medicine.
    He/she can not think to live without medicine. They are using medicine on regular basis. But they have no idea what are the side effect of these medicines. I think instead taking medicine they should their life style.

  3. Pingback: Is There A Solution For The Great Medication Debate? — When Women Inspire – G-O-google

  4. Great article Christy. Your article is in relation to one industry, if people thought about it, how many other industries could this be related to.

    Personally, when I’m ‘under the weather’ the last things I turn to are doctors and medication. I tend to firstly let my body try and recover through it’s own, natural defence, recovery mechanism, as with many other things.

    • I know many people who would second that view you have about avoiding the doctor when feeling under the weather. By the way, why is it called under the weather?

      • haha did try and ‘google’ it, got a few different answers, variations. Otherwise, here’s another one, I would say became a fashion a few years back – “I ain’t got a scooby! 🙂

        • Haha I’ve never heard that “scooby” phrase here in Canada, must be just in the UK! Well at least you gave it a try with the ol’ Google for the other one 😉

        • Haha I did go look that one up too. Originally thought it was something to do with the cartoon character Scooby Doo. It appears it cockney rhyming slang, one of many, many dialects.

        • That reminds me now of a place I like to eat in Vancouver, BC called Cockney Kings. They have placemats that say different cockney sayings 😉 As my family has a British background, it’s great fun! Wishing you a nice weekend ahead

  5. This is an age old problem Christy. Although some pharmaceuticals can cause life threatening illness with side effects, some are necessary to save lives. But many are over prescribed. I’m a very proactive person who does her own studies anytime something is prescribed in my family. We are mostly a non pharmaceutical taking family. I am friends with a few doctors and our good friend is a pharmaceutical salesman with whom I’m always butting heads with calling him a drug pusher, lol. The real sad part is that many doctors themselves aren’t aware of conflicting side effects and push whatever brand of drug their sales rep is touting. Some great advice I’ll offer here is, any questions or concerns, call your local pharmacist. They are the ones who know each drug better than doctors. 🙂 xx

  6. Unfortunately, this isn’t the only problem. High costs of medication always has my panties in a twist. I’ve had friends die from life threatening illnesses, because with crappy insurance, they can’t afford the medication to live. It’s completely absurd.

  7. I am boosters with a few doctors and our salutary booster is a pharmaceutical salesman with whom I’m always butting heads with calling him a drug pusher, lol. This is an geezerhood sometime(a) job Christy.

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