If you have allergies, intranasal steroids like Flonase or Nasacort are Bridgeman’s go-to meds. “They’re shown to have fewer adverse side effects compared with an oral antihistamine or other products for allergies; selecting the best allergy-relief medication is, of course, based on the patient and the symptoms; consulting with a doctor or pharmacist can help guide in the decision-making process,” she says. Learn the reasons your pharmacist knows more about your health than your doctor.
Stifle that cough
The type of cough you have will determine how you should treat it, says Bridgeman. “Cough medicines containing guaifenesin can be used to help bring up mucous and loosen phlegm,” explains Bridgeman. “Medicines containing dextromethorphan are best for a dry, non-productive cough to help suppress the cough reflex.” Some options include Robitussin and Nyquil.
First aid to the rescue
“Alcohol, triple-antibiotic ointment, Band-Aids, and topical anti-itch creams containing hydrocortisone are must-haves for those minor cuts, scrapes, and bites that happen periodically,” notes Bridgeman. “If you’re looking to stock a medicine cabinet with the essentials, these are four types of products I would not omit.”
And take note, says Bridgeman: Unlike tablet and pill medications, these basic first aid supplies are the only ones you should store in your bathroom medicine cabinet. “Temperature swings and humidity can influence the integrity of tablets and pill. They are best kept in a cool, dry place out of the reach of children; a kitchen cabinet works well,” she says. Find out the secrets your pharmacist isn’t telling you.