As promised, the post on prescription happy doctors...
First of all, I should explain that I am not someone who uses a great deal of OTC medicine to begin with. I will take something for a headache if necessary, or if I have a cold or the flu and need to sleep or work. M, on the other hand, takes OTCs if he feels the slightest twinge of something thinking about coming his way.
He was recently prescribed an anti-depressant for a medical reason unrelated to depression. After taking it for nearly 3 months, he started thinking it was causing him to become depressed and paranoid. In reading through the side-effects, he found both of those symptoms listed. He made an appointment to see the doctor and explained the situation. What does the doctor do when M tells him that he no longer wants to be taking said drug? That's right! Increases the dosage. So now M is actually taking the anti-depressant for a depressive state that was induced by the drug in the first place. Brilliant. A drug that wasn't medically necessary to begin with. Oy.
Don't get me wrong, I know many people that need to take the meds they are prescribed, but I also wish that more time and effort could be focused on the actual cause of the problem. Oh, you have asthma? Have you considered trying to stop smoking?!