Oh my goodness! I came back from the recheck at my doc with a buttload of new or changed prescriptions and OTC meds.
Normally, I wouldn’t be very pleased about being prescribed a ton of meds for something, but I’m going on 3 (that’s THREE) months with this hacking, coughing, can’t-get-a-breath crud.
The allergist, as I’ve said, tells me it’s all allergies and asthma, but daggone!
How come I can’t tell or don’t notice when something sets me off? If it’s “seasonal” allergies, how come I have sinus problems (just milder) all year round?
Understand, I take allergy medication year-round. If I don’t, my sinuses become enraged snot factories wherein the snot is more like glue. (sorry, you know I’m gonna be perfectly frank with you here!)
I have a wad of said glue that will sit just behind my tonsils, being moved neither up nor down, no matter how hard or how many times I swallow. It cannot be gargled out, nor dissolved with fizzy beverages. Sometimes it’s hard to eat because I can’t swallow my food easily. It’s an absolute pain in my neck, literally and figuratively!
I discovered about ten years ago that drinking milk made the glue factory worse. And even that was gradual. First it was just a slight increase in mucus, but eventually, it was like the milk turned to gelatin by the time it reached my tonsils. Just YUCK, okay? So, I stopped drinking milk completely.
That helped a lot, but in the past couple years now, I have been noticing other dairy products doing the same thing. So I gave up my beloved sour cream completely. That was ROUGH! I used sour cream ALL the time!
Processed cheeses didn’t seem to bother me and cream cheese wasn’t too hard on me. I don’t know why, but so far, so good with those. I don’t know WHAT I’ll do if I have to give up those too, so I’m praying it doesn’t happen!
So I’ve been taking a 24-hour anti-histamine for years. I started on plain ol’ Sudafed eons ago, but after I got married, I started using Claratin (rinatadine), then the -D formula, then when that stopped working, I used Zyrtec (cetirizine) and soon that stopped working, and now I take Allergra (fexofenadine). This week, the doc switched me from that to Xyzal (levocetirizine dihydrochloride).
I’d never even heard of it before, so it’s new to me. I hope it will work though.
For the past year or so, I’ve been taking Singulair (montelukast) to help with the asthma.
When I saw an ear, nose & throat doctor a couple years ago, she told me to use a netti pot to help keep my ears from getting repeated infections. She said it’d keep my eustachian tubes open and the fluid from collecting in there.
Okay, so if you don’t know about netti pots, you can just click & learn about these little oddities. This was one of the most ‘tasteful’ images I found. Ha ha ha! Except for the fact that she’s way too upright, this is how you do it. You dissolve fine salt in warm purified water then pour it into one nostril so that it runs out the other. Yes, it feels as awkward as it looks, but the effects are worth it.
Well, Doc has been insisting that I get a nasal saline mist instead. I figured it was just like those bottles you squeeze to splatter saline solution up your nose, which is really gross. This is more like an aerosol so it is a little better, but I couldn’t figure out how that was supposed to be better than the netti. She explained that with the spray, I could use it anywhere and even if I wanted to use it “20 times a day” that was okay. She said to use it any time I was around something that triggered the coughing, like cigarette smoke or heavy perfume. She said that washed out the irritants to slow the histamine release.
I hadn’t even thought about that. I will still use the netti when I’m really congested or getting cold. It does a much more ‘heavy duty’ job of rinsing stuff out of there. But she suggested I keep several cans of the saline: in the car, my purse, by the bed, in the shower… so that way I can use it as often as needed.
Something else I was prescribed by another doctor years ago is Flonase (fluticasone propionate),
but it tasted nasty when it would run down the back of my throat and I didn’t notice that it helped much. Could be because I didn’t use it consistently since it was so nasty. Then that doc showed me to spray it pointed toward my ears, and that helped, plus not using two sprays in each nostril at once. But I would still forget to use it more often than not because I didn’t understand what it was for.
My current doc explained that it was a steroid and would decrease inflammation in my nasal passages. So now, I am making a concerted effort to use that stuff.
Okay, on to the rest of the stuff she has me using…
Of all things, she wants me on Sudafed D (pseudoephedrine) for awhile. So…
And then Mucinex (dextromethorphan guaifenesin), which I hadn’t used before.
She has me taking 1200 mg right now and says I need a maintenance dose after I get better. Says it’s to “thin that snot”. Bahaha..and yes, she uses those exact words. I just love how down-to-earth and plain spoken she is.
The allergist has had me on this Qvar inhaler (beclomethasone dipropionate HFA) for asthma maintenance for about 3 weeks now.
I will not complain about it because the first stuff they gave me tasted waaaay nasty and my insurance wouldn’t cover it, so now I have the Qvar, which doesn’t taste bad at all compared to the Aerospan. *blech*
The allergist also has me using my nebulizer
with an albuterol/atrovent (ipratropium) mix.
I was using it twice a day while the coughing was so bad, but now I’m just doing it as needed.
I also got my first-ever B12 shot. I hope it helps up my energy as much as people say it does!
So I know this has been terribly boring, but I’m hoping if I put this out here, dated and with all the generic names and such, maybe I can remember what I’ve taken and what works in the future. If you don’t take a lot of meds, you have no idea how easy it is to forget the names of medicines and doctors and the dates you used and saw them… By this point in my life, I scarcely remember those kinds of things unless I see or use them for years at a time.
I am hoping the jittery-ness will decrease soon. Not including the nebulizer treatments, these meds make me SO jittery it’s not even funny. I need to check my blood pressure, now that it’s crossed my mind. That’s something else the doctor gave me…catapres (clonidine), a blood pressure medicine to take if mine ever gets above 160/90 since many of the meds she’s got me on right now can cause the blood pressure to rise.
Oh, I hope I don’t have to take it! *reaching for the bp cuff*
Stay healthy, y’all!