Detoxification

When one decides to break free from addiction, the body must go through a process of withdrawal to rid itself of the toxic substances of the drug. Through a process called detoxification, the individual goes through some or all of the withdrawal symptoms listed earlier in this chapter. How long withdrawal lasts can depend on how much, how often, and what type of OTC drug was taken. For those addicted to OTC drugs, the detoxification process generally takes place at home, although...

The Birth of the FDA

In the 1930s, a pharmaceutical company named S. E. Massengill produced a medication that proved helpful in These innocent-looking toothache drops make no bones about their chief ingredient cocaine These innocent-looking toothache drops make no bones about their chief ingredient cocaine fighting bacterial infections. The medication was called sulfanilamide. Sulfanilamide, in pill form, tasted terrible and was difficult to swallow, so the manufacturer decided to produce the same medication in...

Different Drug at Different Amounts

Dextromethorphan, as found in cough and cold medicines, is generally a safe and beneficial drug it is only dangerous if used beyond the suggested dosage listed on the product package. In fact, cough medicines are generally extremely safe with very few side effects. Because of their safety record, they are sold directly to consumers who have determined that they need the medicine. It is an accepted practice for people with colds, allergies, and headaches to treat themselves with OTC drugs there...

Prohibited

Pnr Medication Chart

Combining alcohol with DXM makes both drugs far more dangerous. DXM abuse is harmful enough on its own, but the cold medicines that contain it also sometimes contain other products that can heighten the danger of abusing them. For example, several cough syrups with DXM in them also contain acetaminophen, a pain reliever. Taking large doses of it causes liver damage, strokes, heart attacks, and death. Even if abusers are familiar with the dangers of DXM itself, they might not be aware that other...

Extreme Dieting

Getting high is not the only criteria for drug abuse. Many people who are overly concerned with losing weight misuse drugs to achieve their goals. Instead of dieting and exercise, diet pills have become a popular way of losing weight. While diet pills may not be as physically addicting as some other drugs such as cocaine or heroin, people can still become psychologically dependent on them. This type of addiction is similar to caffeine dependence, but more extreme and with more serious...

Weight Loss Beyond Diet Pills Laxatives and Diuretics

Pills Illness Body Image

Diet pills are not the only OTC drugs that are abused in the battle to achieve weight loss. Laxatives are another substance that people use to lose weight. Normally, people use laxatives to relieve constipation, since they act to irritate intestinal linings and stimulate nerves. Abusers believe that they help them lose weight by rushing food through their bodies. However, laxatives do not actually aid in weight loss, since the nutrients and calories in food, the real culprits in weight gain,...

Weight Loss Solutions and Other Dietary Supplements

Ingredients included in weight-loss aids or other dietary supplements can be unsafe, even though the packaging may say that the product is all-natural. Just because a product claims to be made only of natural materials does not mean that it is automatically safe to use. Some substances found in nature are toxic to humans and should not be ingested. For a famous example, simply consider marijuana a naturally growing plant, but an illegal drug that can cause health problems nonetheless. One of...