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Sunday, May 25, 2014

Take care to understand the nature of medicines you consume

On a sunny morning I had been to my friend’s home to meet him. He is a graduate engineer.  In his house I saw him sneezing, holding a hand kerchief in his hands and all the time rubbing his nose with it. I saw his eyes were red and swollen.  He should have been suffering from common cold I guessed. I asked him whether he had taken any mild medicine for the cold. He said that he had been to a doctor and the doctor had prescribed four tablets and one tonic. I asked him whether the cold is very severe and is there for a more than three days. He said that the trouble started only the previous day and he promptly consulted a senior doctor after waiting in the queue for more than two hours.  He also added that the doctor he consulted is an MD and cure is guaranteed for those who go to him.

I was so eager to see the medicines prescribed because normally I take an analgesic and antipyretic like Paracetamol and may not require anything more to cure the common cold. I have also heard that in developed countries doctors may not even prescribe this but ask the patients to wait for a day or two and they will be alright. 

He showed me his medicine box that carried drugs for five days. There was an antibiotic, an analgesic, a B-complex supplement and one more pill for peptic ulcer. The tonic he referred was an expectorant (Cough syrup). My friend did not know which one is an antibiotic and what is the expected action of the prescribed medicines.  I suggested that he should be aware of the mechanism of treatment with these medicines. Obviously he ignored my suggestion and went ahead to speak about other things continuing his noisy reactions to the common cold.

Ethical doctors will agree that an antibiotic is not required to treat the cold unless it has become very severe and has developed into pneumonia.  But many patients would under- estimate the doctor if he is going to prescribe only paracetamol. Also the greedy doctors have already convinced the public that ’more medicine, quick relief.’ We should understand that unnecessarily consuming antibiotic and even vitamins is harmful in the long run. The reason for high incidence of diabetes and hypertension among Indian population could even be attributed to this culture of consuming unnecessary medicines. But no medical school will get aid to do research in this direction and only very few doctors have the guts to reveal the facts even if they have evidences supporting this assumption.   

There has been great development in health care systems. Mostly the developments are in the field of allopathic medical science. Marvelous equipments have been invented and the uncertainty factor has been drastically reduced helping doctors to choose the right treatments. 

When someone is ill the doctor prescribes medicines. In our country the doctors never explain the mechanism of action of medicines they prescribe. Even if they try, most of the patients do not want to listen to all these but want only quick results. Due to this result- oriented approach many never mind taking combination of numerous medicines. Some patients develop confidence on the doctors based on the number of different types of drugs the doctor prescribes.  However they don’t want to understand the mechanism of each medicine that is being given.

Giving medicines is technically defined as medical intervention.  We must be aware of action of each medicine on our body and mind.

 Medicines that help to relieve pain are called anti-inflammatory. Medicines that help to lower body temperature at times of fever are called antipyretic.  Medicines that kill the disease causing organisms are called antibiotic. There are Vitamins and histamine blockers. These medicines are commonly used for diseases and wounds.  There are greater numbers of other types of medicines that are prescribed to manage chronic deficiencies like diabetes and hypertension.  We cannot choose the medicines that we should take in many severe instances but can understand the mechanism of action of each medicine and keep monitoring the side effects. We can also inform the doctor about the medicines taken in case of reoccurrence of the ailment. Here no doctor except Homeopathy practitioners keep record of patients and naturally no one will go and wait for several hours to get homeopathic remedy for common cold or fever. 

Each medicine has an effect and side effect. For that matter whatever we eat, has effect and side effect.  Every medical intervention generates an action and for every action there has to be a reaction. It is meaningless if they say that Ayurvedic, Siddha and Homeopathy are free from side effects.  The side effect could be different but it will be there. 

If we understand some of the basic fundamental about medicines, many times we can avoid taking them unnecessarily. Medical intervention can do damages to our organs and let us keep this damage as minimum as possible by becoming aware of the medicines we take.

There are only 50 and odd pharmaceutical names that you may be required to remember under all categories and believe me; it is not at all difficult. There could be hundreds of brand names under which a particular medicine is sold. The weight in which they are offered may vary. This you can find by reading the fine print on the foil pack.

Say for instance .
Paracetamol  an analgesic is available in brand names like Crocin, Metacin, Calpol, P-500 and
Dolo650. Crocin,Metacin, Calpol and P-500  are paracetamol 500mg and Dolo has the
medicine weighing 650 mg. 

Likewise you will come to understand the pharmaceutical names and what really is prescribed to you. The only challenge is to read the fine print on the aluminium foil but you will get the skill to do it since this is concerning what you eat.  

So let us not be ignorant of what medicines we take. Since these days people are exploited and where the government administration is very weak, we have to be extra careful.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Some thoughts to share about the recent Lok Sabha Election Results.

At last majority Indians lost faith in the Congress Government and have opted an alternative. The victory of NDA is tremendous. NDA 337 seats and BJP alone 283 seats puts the BJP in absolute majority. So India is going to see a dynamic Prime Minister Mr.Narendra Modi and so we can look out for many changes and rapid growth. 

Mr.Modi’s election campaigning was simply awesome. He travelled nook and corner of the country and addressed huge gathering. The majority who has voted for BJP and NDA were eager to see a drastic change in the government and Mr. Modi is the leader they long to try in the interest of the country. 

So BJP will form a very stable parliament with Mr.Modi as Prime Minister. Mr.Modi has a proven track record in Gujarat for his rapid action and great developments. He has to be even more aggressive to see things happen nationally. There is always the state Government and some of them might cooperate and others will simply go on their own proven inefficient ways. Better state governance under the directions of centre is possible if the state government is also BJP. The non BJP governments will try to save their vote bank by projecting that with lot of difficulties they are bringing in benefits from central government. There is a possibility that they will also propagate that the BJP government in the centre is not giving any support to the state government even if the central government offers them the best support for progress.

This scenario could prevail in Tamilnadu because 37 seats out of 39 is won by the AIADMK. No one is going to be minister from Tamilnadu.  Because many of the elected MPs might lack communication skills in Hindi they may not be able to represent Tamilnadu in a fitting way. 

However the strong vote bank and caste and linguistic based political scenario in Tamilnadu can only produce this result. It appears that in a vote bank politics the national interest and state interest comes only secondary. People have not understood what is state government and what is central government or they do not want two bosses at the same time.

Though Mr. Modi and Ms. Jayalalitha are said to be in very good terms, there is no need for AIADMK’s support to the formation of NDA government at the centre. So the people of Tamilnadu may not take any active role in the progress of India during Mr.Modi’s tenure.
We have to wait and see what ever happens. Jai Hind.  

Sunday, May 4, 2014

The Elections

In a democratic set up, in the process of electing the leaders by a voting process offers equal right to all citizens or members of association. This idea of one vote per citizen or a member will be great if all are equally committed to elect an able leader who will work for the collective gain. But unfortunately people are utterly selfish. They want to gain in terms of their profession, status, caste, religion and in whatever way they can identify themselves. It is obvious that the value of each vote is not the same. However the very basis of democracy is that it values all vote equally. So the smart candidate does a home work and devices ways and means of accumulating vote. Votes can be gained by fueling caste feeling, by promising support for minority religion, promising good pay packages for the people in government services and by offering free benefits to the so called economically backward people.  Votes can also be bought with money. Sadly very few votes can be gained by the promises of better governance and better infrastructure.

So by this process selfish people come to power and the sixty seven years of post independence era in Indian history have proved this. Someone who really wants to come to power for the cause of building a better nation or better association should do his/her home work properly. One biggest loop hole in the system is that once someone comes to power, the promises at the time of campaigning need not be honoured. People are not going to question all these things and even they question the leader can always ignore and go ahead with activities that will ensure that they will be elected again. People are left with no option but to suffer, obey and stoop down. Only when the next election comes, the opponent parties are going to talk about these. However the person in power can raise the voices louder and louder about the achievements.  By virtue of the position the person could have amazed great lot of money that can buy votes. Even the normal accomplishments can be projected as great services rendered. 

So anybody who is interested to do well for the country or an association should follow an appropriate game plan to win the game of election. The past years have built a culture that justifies bribe and corruption as normal. The evolution of such a culture is due to the incapability of the past leaders to be strict in their action because of their selfish interest. They aimed to be leaders for repeated terms and a result they prioritized the activity of amazing money. They have been lenient to their subordinates and bureaucrats so that they could build a stronger vote bank ensuring perpetual victory. Even if the constitution is amended allowing each leader only one term in a particular position, people team up in parties and will continue to run the show as at present.

We have been taught selfish prayers. We have been encouraged to compete and fight for positions. We have devised what are called healthy competitions. We have been conditioned to think all these are right. We have accepted bribe and corruption as natural things but still have laws against these practices. Because of all these things when we suffer we are taught to pray to God and tolerate with the hope that God will help one day. 

Of course things change after some time and we are taught to believe that God has helped. So we run away from understanding the fundamental reasons and fail to encourage the next generation in the right direction that will bring down our sufferings. 

On the other hand because of technological advancement especially in the field of internet and communication, the younger generation finds out ways and means of getting to countries that are well administered. This is the quick fix solution for the problems they anticipate while living in badly administered countries.  So the creamy layer of the younger generation is thus lost and it is favourable to the politicians.  The blessing in disguise is the fact that the success of a country does not depend on these creamy layer who are selfish and lack patriotism. 

The real success depends on action, inspiration, patriotism and collective intelligence. This is evidenced by the phenomenal success of Japan and China. In countries like India there are always ripples of patriotism, great inspiration and positive action. However these ripples should develop into waves and change the present situation. Let us encourage the people who create this positive ripple and see a great wave in near future.

However there is a possibility that a leader might be elected by the present democratic election who can understand all these things. The path to the throne is the same but the person who makes it to it can be a real good administrator. Once such a person comes to power such badly administered countries and associations can see a renaissance and till such time we can only wait. The theist can pray to God to give them a good leader.

So the need of the hour is to achieve 100 % polling and creating awareness in the minds of the youth and ignorant mass about this process. Each and every one of us should vote to find out what percentage think like us. Then this population will increase and one day we will have better administration and infrastructure. However if there is an opposite trend in metros where the upper middle class live, it shows that they are utterly selfish and unconcerned about the country. Great amount of effort is required to change this attitude because in these places people spend hours in beauty salons and have not bothered to come to the polling booth.