The Upside and Downside to Medication

The Upside and Downside to Medication
Identity Magazine for Mompreneurs
Written by TeamIdentity

There are thousands of medications on the market, both prescription and over-the-counter. While medication can help people with numerous mental and physical health problems, many come with side-effects and other potential hazards.

Here are some of the most common medications and their upsides and downsides.


Xanax is the trade name for a type of benzodiazepine. This medication is typically used to treat anxiety and panic disorders. Clinical trials showed that Xanax worked better than placebos in controlling the symptoms of anxiety and lead to a significant decrease in the frequency of panic attacks.

Unfortunately, there is no data that confirms the safety of using the drug long-term. It also has a high potential for abuse, and cessation after prolonged use can have severe withdrawal symptoms that may include seizures.

Furthermore, it can be dangerous when taken with certain other medications or alcohol. If you are prescribed another medication that could conflict with it, you should go to your doctor and ask how long does Xanax last in the body. Waiting until the drug is out of your system will help prevent potentially dangerous drug interactions.


Ibuprofen is a type of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). It’s widely available, inexpensive and effective for treating pain and inflammation. Research has also begun to show that ibuprofen may also help with emotional pain. This is because the same area of the brain that processes physical pain also deals with emotional pain.

The downsides of ibuprofen are few, but they’re worth considering. Long-term use of high doses of the drug can cause stomach ulcers and intestinal bleeding. Studies also show that even at low doses, ibuprofen and other NSAIDs increase the risk of heart attack and stroke.


This commonly prescribed medication belongs to the muscle relaxer class of drugs. It’s ideal for use by people with neuropathy and other neurological conditions, certain forms of arthritis and those who suffered muscle injuries. When taken as advised, they can drastically reduce pain and discomfort associated with these issues.

The negatives aren’t as bad as some medications, but they can be problematic for some people. Carisoprodol can cause dizziness and drowsiness, which makes it a risk while driving or using machinery. It can also cause low blood pressure when standing, which may cause some people to faint.


Tramadol is an opioid painkiller that also acts as an antidepressant and changes the way your brain perceives pain. It is often prescribed for people who suffer from both pain and certain mood disorders.

However, tramadol isn’t ideal for everyone and carries some risks. It has a potential for addiction, though not as severely as other opioids. It is not safe to take while pregnant or breastfeeding, and it may worsen kidney or liver problems.


This over-the-counter drug is widely used to treat insomnia, allergies, dermatitis, cold symptoms, itching and motion sickness. Some of the biggest benefits of diphenhydramine are that it’s inexpensive, effective for several common issues and easy to obtain.

That said, diphenhydramine does have some risks and side effects, and it should not be taken under certain circumstances. The most common side effects are drowsiness, dry eyes, and dry mouth.

It should not be used while driving or using machinery since a normal dose creates the same level of impairment as being over the legal blood alcohol limit.

It should also never be used with alcohol as it may cause a life-threatening level of sedation. In rare cases, allergic reactions have been reported.

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Photo by Kayla Maurais on Unsplash

*Disclaimer: always consult with your doctor*

About the author

Identity Magazine for Mompreneurs


Our mission is to empower women to "Get All A’s in their Game of Life" by discovering their powers and transforming through Self-Acceptance, Appreciation, and Personal Achievement—through all of our content and collaborations.

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