Taking pharmaceutical drugs for extended periods of time can lead to severe long-term consequences, but there is no real risk associated with taking the natural remedies listed above for short or long periods of time.
Research has shown ginger powder to be just as effective as the prescription drug sumatriptan in treating migraines but with far fewer side effects 3.
Although gravol is marketed as a drug for nausea it is actually an antihistamine. Antihistamines have been associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes in women with severe morning sickness (hyperemesis gravidarum)2. Despite these findings, gravol is still commonly recommended by doctors for pregnant women dealing with morning sickness.
Tylenol is considered generally safe for pregnant and breastfeeding women in the medical community, but so was Aspirin until 1986 when it was found to be the culprit behind increased cases of Reye’s syndrome in children. A recent review of the research of acetaminophen safety during pregnancy discovered that it may not be as safe as previously thought, and may increase the risk of asthma for children, as well as put them at risk for liver problems4.
If your child has a high fever, by all means go ahead and grab that bottle of children’s acetaminophen to bring the fever down (untreated high fevers in children can cause fever-induced seizures). But for other symptoms, you might want to think twice before reaching for that bottle of pills.
It seems that as a society we have become a bunch of wimps. We reach for a magic pill at the first inkling of an ache or pain, but that habit could prove to cause us more aches and pains later on in life if we are not cautious. More troublesome is the long term effects these drugs could possibly have on babies and children.
Pharmaceutical drugs are never 100% safe, and should only be used sparingly when absolutely necessary. With all of the available over the counter pills these days it’s far too easy to over-use medicine. If you are in excruciating pain or unbearably uncomfortable with your symptoms, first try a safe natural remedy and if that doesn’t work – go ahead and take a pill. If you have a minor headache or a mild throbbing in your back – suck it up people.
1. Drugs.com. Accessed October 15, 2014: http://www.drugs.com
2. Fejzo MS, Magtira A, Schoenberg FP, MacGibbon K, Mullin P, Romero R, Tabsh K. Antihistamines and other prognostic factors for adverse outcome in hyperemesis gravidarum.
Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol. 2013 Sep;170(1):71-6. doi: 10.1016/j.ejogrb.2013.04.017. Epub 2013 Jun 7.
3. Maghbooli M, Golipour F, Moghimi EA, Yousefi M. Comparison between the efficacy of ginger and sumatriptan in the ablative treatment of migraine headaches. Phytother Res. 2014 Mar;28(3):412-5. doi: 10.1002/ptr.4996. Mar;97(1):128-39. doi: 10.1016/j.jri.2012.10.014.