Sunday, November 13, 2011

Another entry in the "worst night's sleep" list

So it turned out I did come down with a case of The Cough, and I still have it. It is slowly driving me insane.

Things came to a head late last night when I gave up trying to suppress my own freaking coughs while I attempted to sleep. Sometime around midnight, I went rooting around our medicine box looking for any spare pills of anything that might hold a shred of a promise of relief for me. Certain cough suppressants are controlled substances in this country, which means that unlike most other medicines (even stuff like antibiotics), you must have a prescription to purchase them - and then insurance doesn't cover it. I knew I wouldn't be able to go to the health clinic to get a prescription until the next morning.

I dug up two pills of generic brand NyQuil and noted happily that the ingredients included a cough suppressant. Unfortunately, I often choke on pills even as small as normal ibuprofen tablets, so I knew there was no way I was going to get the NyQuil softgels down.

So if you walked into my kitchen a little past midnight last night, you would have found me using a sharp knife to hack maniacally at a NyQuil softgel, trying to get at the sweet, suppressanty goodness inside. The end result was this:

Thankfully, I fell into a restless sleep soon after.

HOWEVER. A few hours later, I was woken up by the chirping of the smoke alarm in our hallway (did I mention I was sleeping on the couch at this point, to avoid disturbing Jeremy with my coughing? Well, I was). Our smoke alarms don't run out of batteries without putting up a fight - they chirp loudly every minute or so to let us know what's happening. Why the smoke alarm decided to run out of batteries last night, of all nights, and at that particular hour of night, of all particular hours, I have no idea. But it almost put me over the edge.

I was disoriented by the effects of the NyQuil but I dragged a stool over to the smoke alarm and tried to disconnect the battery. I was terrified that I would accidentally press the test button and set off the alarm. That didn't happen. I successfully removed the battery, but then the smoke alarm started chirping faster than before, in a continuous beeping pattern. So I re-connected the battery and resorted to desperate measures, namely, waking up Jeremy.

He took care of it, I went back to "sleep" (= that horrible NyQuil-induced haze) and woke up a couple of hours later, ready (or not) for a full day's work.

BLAH. Let's hope tonight is better. I went to the health clinic as soon as I got a break and the doctor prescribed me something called Dextrolag. Sounds promising...?


Susanne said...

Hope you feel better soon! I find it so amusing that you think to take pictures of your hacked-up gel capsules to share with us. :)

Liz Johnson said...

Ohhhhhh yuck. I'm so sorry. Here's hoping the Dextrolag is magical.

Anonymous said...

Hope you feel better soon!


Kathy Haynie said...

Ugggh. Hope the meds are magic!

Sometimes it helps to heat a pot of water to boiling. Take it off the stove and put it in front of you on the table. Drape a towel over your head and set a timer for 5 minutes. Breathe the steam.

A teaspoon of honey, or honey-lemon tea, can help. But maybe they're not strong enough for The Cough.

Every three or four years I have to get a prescription for an inhaler when I can't stop coughing. I don't normally have asthma, but sometimes my body needs that extra boost to help with breathing.

Good luck with getting better SOON!

Jessie said...

I can't take pills either!!!!! I thought I was the only one. I'm slowly getting better, as in I can now take an Advil, but I used to get anxious over even my birth control pills.

Kitty Crazy! said...

So sorry you're having such a hard time, Bridget. Good luck and get better.-Janice

Matthew said...

There is a really super cough suppresant sold here named Toplexil.

I highly recommend it. You should check and see if it is available to you. It is significantly more effective than anything my family has ever tried. Hope you feel better soon!

Bridget Palmer said...

Matthew, I am going to the pharmacy in search of Toplexil right now!

Bridget Palmer said...

JESSIE. We need to talk. Nobody understands me. My husband will sometimes put two pills in his mouth at once, look at me mockingly, and then swallow them with little or no water. It almost makes me gag just watching it.

OSC wrote a piece about how to swallow pills without gagging but I'm too scared to put his technique to the test.

Julee said...

I second that Susanne. As for the smoke alarm you should have used the usual method of beating it with a stick:)

Jessie said...

I was all excited about this newfangled technique you linked to, until I read the article. I discovered that method for myself a couple of years ago, and YES, it really helps with the capsules that tend to float (though I wouldn't say turn your chin down SHARPLY like the author suggested...I'd say slowly tilt your chin down until you get the pill in position). My issue is with the non-floaters, PARTICULARLY non-floaters that aren't gel coated or slippery. A large powdery tablet is the stuff of my nightmares.


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