This miseducation has garnered the industry well over $1 billion dollars a year for non-prescription medications. Peek inside any random home medicine cabinet, and it’s clear that the average American maintains their own personal mini-pharmacy. I hate to break it to you, but over the counter medications like Advil, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, Aleve, and Tylenol (just to name a few) may actually have as many side effects – if not more – than prescription medications.

Let’s take a look at the facts:

  1. Conservatively speaking, NSAID (Non-steroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs) use leads to more than 103,000 hospitalizations and 16,500 deaths each year. NSAIDS are basically over the counter pain killers that can be used for a variety of conditions like back pain, neck pain, headaches, heart disease, inflammation, and more.
  2. Long-term NSAID use can cause kidney problems and lead to kidney failure.
  3. NSAID use can lead to very serious and irreversible liver diseases in children and adults.
  4. NSAIDs increases your risk of serious – even fatal – stomach and intestinal adverse reactions such as bleeding, ulcers, and perforation of the stomach or intestines. These events can occur at any time during treatment and without warning symptoms.
  5. Aspirin hailed as “the life saver” on evening commercials is has been recommended by doctors for heart disease prevention; however in recent years, it’s use has been scaled back due to the side effects listed above that go hand-in-hand with NSAID overuse.
  6. Laxatives are causing major dehydration problems because they completely deplete the electrolytes in your body required to keep all bodily processes functioning properly.
  7. Anti-acids or heartburn meds are causing major digestive issues. Yes, the burning sensation comes from the HCL (hydrochloric acid) in the stomach so what do the pharmaceutical companies do? They treat the symptom – not the cause (isn’t that long-running theme of most pharmaceutical drugs?). So the pharmaceutical companies made a bunch of heartburn meds that limit HCL production to minimize the burning sensation. RED FLAG! What most heartburn sufferers (or simply “consumers” as the pharmaceutical companies see them) don’t understand is that HCL is the most crucial chemical required by the digestive system to properly digest food. When HCL is altered or in short supply, the result is malabsorption of nutrients, indigestion, and longterm digestive issues. Huhllllo? Did Big Pharma get the memo? Of course they did; but fixing the crux of the issue would put a damper on what’s been a lucrative cash cow. You don’t look like a cow to me.

Having said my spiel, it’s difficult to determine whether prescription medications or over the counter medications are worse. No question, both do serious damage to the human body. Obviously, no one wants to take any pharmaceuticals unless they have to. Yes, all of these medications have a time and a place and may be used safely within moderation. Unfortunately, so many people rely on medications everyday to manage (or “mask”) their underlying health problems, yet most of them are unaware of the harm they may be doing to their body.

The key takeaway is to remember that just because you can medicate without a prescription, it doesn’t mean the over the counter medications are safe. Likewise, just because the doctor prescribed it doesn’t mean it’s safe either. Next time you are at the doctor’s office, ask him what medications he takes. Ask them if they use the full vaccine schedule on their children. You will be surprised what you hear. They are all fully aware of the major flaw our “sick care” system is causing in the United States.

As a chiropractor, it’s so funny to hear the usual stereotypes, questions, and statements all day long. People presume a certain treatment is ineffective, quick to tell me “oh, that won’t work!” Or, “I don’t believe in chiropractic.” Yet these same people are the ones that take the MD’s word for everything without doing their due diligence.

That is my motivation for writing these blogs – so that I can share with you my knowledge and help educate the public so that they can make informed decisions. Your health is too important to sit on your hands and wait for the truth about the major side effects that kill millions of people every year to be common knowledge. Now is the time to get the facts and do your research.

And for those who say, “I don’t believe in chiropractic”? I tell them this: the beauty of chiropractic is that it works whether you believe it or not – plus, it doesn’t come with any of the harsh side effects like the Big Pharma standbys mentioned above. The bottom line? Educate before you medicate! Contact us to set up a time to come in the office.