I was talking with some folks today who had recently started on some new medications for pain. They had both suffered from chronic pain syndromes and had tried a wide variety of meds with poor results. Needless to say they were frustrated and tired of hurting. While talking I began to ask some typical questions such as:
- What have you tried for medications?
- How long had you been on them?
- Did you find them effective even a little?
- What else have you tried besides medications to manage your symptoms?
- Did you find any relief from these?
The common thread I found was that both people were quick to decide the meds were not effective. They seemed to understand the need to build up therapeutic blood levels and they remember their doctor saying it would take some time before the full effect of the drug would be realized. Yet both of these people stopped taking their medication within a week of starting the regimen.
I tried to explain to these folks that I really didn’t think they gave the drugs a fair chance. They were too quick to discount their effectiveness. It is understandable to be impatient with medication therapy–especially after trying so many different drugs and combinations. However, it is possible that these folks did indeed have a drug that could help them but they passed it by–giving up on it before it had a chance to help them.
Patients need to have patience! Expect to try a medication for at least 3 solid weeks before making any type of decision on the effectiveness of the drug. If you feel relief before three weeks–that is wonderful. If you do not, don’t be surprised and don’t be ready to write it off just then. For most folks, these syndromes didn’t come on overnight. It is not realistic for many to go away suddenly and completely.
Tincture of time can be the hardest to take and the most important to comply with. But doing so can make all the difference.