Kola my friend had been absent from lectures for days – 3 days, precisely. We met after he resumed, and, out of curiosity, I asked him why he’d been absent from classes. He’d been down with fever.
On returning home that day, I started feeling very weak, and I had a slight headache. So, I knew something wasn’t normal. I went to see the doctor and explained to him. He asked many questions, most of which I can’t remember again now. Finally, he prescribed some medications and instructed that I take them for the next 7 days. But I’ve stopped the medications since yesterday, because I was feeling good again.
You know what? Kola’s last statement struck a nerve in me. After just 2 days or so, he stopped taking the drugs that he’d been instructed to take for 7 days! He didn’t even reach halfway.
Out of sincere concern, I tried to convince him to continue with the medications, as the doctor knew better. But I failed. My friend saw no reason why he should continue taking the drugs for an ailment that had subsided.
Are you like my friend? I mean, do you opine that there’s no point carrying on with medications once you start feeling like you’re cured? Well, you need to get something clear: Your opinion is not only wrong, it’s dangerous. In fact, it could be deadly! And here are 2 reasons why:
1. Each ailment takes certain number of days or weeks to heal — completely.
And that’s because the underlying cause (bacteria, etc) can take that long to be completely eliminated from your system. So, noticing signs that you’re well again may not mean that you’re completely cured of your ailment.
While feeling better after few days of taking some medications shows you’re winning the battle, truth is, you’ve not won. And if you stop too early, your enemies (bacteria, etc.) will reinforce and knock you out again, with a stronger force.
But when you continue with your medications for the prescribed period, you’ll successfully uproot all underlying causes of the ailment, and you’ll win the battle, completely.
2. Drug resistance will most likely occur
When you stop medications too early, bacteria and other disease-causing agents may build up strong resistance to the medications. This can cause serious problems, as drug resistance renders most medications ineffective.
When this happens, your doctor will have to keep trying other alternatives until he finds an effective one, which is usually more expensive. Meanwhile, you spend longer time on the sick bed and increase the chance of spreading the ailment to others.
Oh! I almost forgot to tell you the end of the story. Two weeks after Kola’s resumption, he fell sick again, and he was absent at lectures for 3 weeks. The doctor confirmed that his earlier ailment resurged due to his stopping the prescribed medications too early.
The truth is, Kola would have prevented the resurgence of his sickness if he had completed his medications at first. But due to laxity, he spent longer on the sick bed, and he spent more money on drugs. Of course, he could have prevented all of that. But I’m glad he’s now learnt his lesson – in the bitter way, though.
So take the doctor’s words seriously. Always finish your drugs. That’s the best way to feel better, stay healthy, and help those around you by not spreading your sickness to them.
Have you made this mistake in the past? Or have you, like Kola, learned your lessons too? Share your response in the comments.
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