also Health

TRUE STORY:  “I’m dying, I need help!”  A plea on the phone to my friend Mark. “I’ll be right over.”  I had a high fever, almost 105, around 6 p.m. and knew it was strep throat. I was groggy and could hardly move. Mark rushed over and took me to the emergency room. They immediately administered a large dose of penicillin. Within a few hours my temperature was almost normal. A miracle. Without my friend and the ‘wonder’ drug it is possible I would not be relating this story.

Sometimes you are at the mercy of others and modern medicine. As independent as you might be there are times when an unseen scourge assaults your body. If you are fortunate relief can be found. It does help to have foresight and know where to seek remedies. In the ‘western world’, of course, there are pharmacies and medical facilities everywhere. You depend on them. They become a vital part of your ‘survival repertory’. Along with an ever increasing supply of nostrums that accumulate in your home. How many tubes, jars and little round vials of medicine are you hording? Remember what they are for? Do you feel more secure having them handy? Do you ask friends what they use, what works best for them? Do you experiment with cold remedies? Are you an habitual user of certain drugs? Aspirin maybe? Other pain relievers? Join the club. Most people cannot endure a headache for five minutes. Pop a pill. Why not? For anything that ails you:  hemorrhoids, allergies, indigestion, what have you. The pharmacy provides it all. And if you need something stronger, say a mood elevator, secure a prescription. Consume the elixir. Feel good. That’s what it’s all about. God forbid you should experience any discomfort.

Is there something wrong with this attitude? With such a reliance on substances that “spell relief?”  Advertisements extolling their remedies rely on this dependence. Billions are spent on pharmaceuticals. Are we really that sick? Or are we inundated with so many media messages maligning and overcoming maladies that we ‘buy into some’? Perhaps too many? What do you think?

Are we addicted to ‘quick fixes’? Instant repairs of tires, autos, radios, televisions, computers, heaters, plumbing, electricity, etc … so of course, our bodies. How ‘bout our habits of instant gratification? Candy, ice cream, soft drinks, sex. And for many: caffeine, nicotine, alcohol and ‘drugs’. Maximize what makes us feel good. Pleasure is a worthy pursuit; pain is to be avoided or eliminated … as quickly as possible. Why not? We have the means. Enjoy life but be prepared. Keep your arsenal of aids at the ready. You never know.

What is scary though is this dependence on ‘product’. What happens if it is no longer available? Can you live your life without it? Start exercising regularly. Get ‘high’ on the beauty in nature and on the creations of ‘man’:  art, music, literature. Is it possible to heal yourself with natural remedies and a positive attitude? Sometimes. Bicarbonate of soda works well. But realistically you often need the help of modern medicine. I would not be here without penicillin.

Judicious use of essential medicines is certainly preferable than obsessing on every conceivable chemical cure. Medical practitioners should be consulted but not for frivolous and incidental discomforts. Try keeping your bodily functions in perspective. They need attention at times but nature has a way of healing that you can depend upon most of the time. Do your best at being self-reliant. You will feel better about yourself … more confident. However, do not hesitate to call on a friend when you need one.



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