Five dangers of self-medication. By Dr~Protocol

“Mum, my temperature is rising”.

“Go and take paracetamol,” would be the reply of a typical Nigerian mum.

Self Medication has actually done more harm than good in our society. It is an act of using substance without the supervision of a medical professional or practitioner. It is becoming common among youths who overdose of some drugs because they want to feel “high”.

Here are some dangers of self medication:

DEATH

One of the dangers of self medication is death. Substances are made to work perfectly with the right dose but an overdose could actually become disastrous. For instance, overdose of sleeping pills could lead to sleeping irregularities and if not quickly wiped off from the system could lead to death.

PSYCHOSIS

This refers to loss of contact with reality. Substances influence the way recipients behave. An overdose could actually lead to anxiety disorder or even depression. Some psychiatric patients are in this situation because of self medication.

MALFUNCTIONING OF THE BODY SYSTEM

Self medication has harmful effects on health. At times, a patient may be under prescribed medication for different health issues, and self medicating may lead to adverse reactions to the body system.

IT LEADS TO COMPLICATIONS
People tend to use pills as if they are using candies. What we do not realise is opting for self medication makes us prone to allergies, drug dependence , and even addiction and might leads to complications to the body system.

IT INCREASES THE POTENTIAL FOR DRUG ABUSE AND ADDICTION.

Physical dependence on medicines is part of the most serious health implications of self medication. Some medicines like antidepressants, stimulants and pain relievers can produce the same effect as illicit drugs especially when taken in increased quantities.

The Nigerian mentality is that once you are having a headache you need paracetamol but most times reverse is the case. This has led to addiction that people use paracetamol to cure headache or body pain.

Many have lost their lives to overdose of drugs that actually cause dizziness. The first step to eradicating self-medication is getting rid of the many drugs you keep at home. Buy only those prescribed by a physician. And like it is always written in the labels of drug, keep them away from children.

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