What does a Garden Gnome do when she is not gardening, in the kitchen or doing genealogy? Well the answer might just surprise you so read the entries to find out more. This blog focuses on everything we do to make our house a home. There will be a strong emphasis on home energy efficiency and do-it-yourself (DIY) projects. At the same time there will also be crafts, knitting and crocheting projects along with any other little tips we do to create that down to earth, I want to be here home. Please enjoy your visit :)

Monday, December 31, 2012

Check Those Expiry Dates

My husband is down with a cold graciously shared by our youngest grandchild.  Given the fact we just recently spent time in a busy airport filled with holiday travellers, spent time in a couple of malls infested with germs, and we are tired from our vacation, it is little wonder a few germs could get the best of him.  Neither of us are big into using any medications other that dietary supplements.  I am officially on two prescription drugs but even my doctor knows I only take them if I absolutely need to.  Neither of us get the flu shot even though I am considered high risk.  Instead, we believe in healthy eating with dietary supplementation if necessary, adequate sleep, a bit of exercise, well you get the picture.

When my husband gets a cold, he insists on using Nyquil.  I personally don't like this OTC product because it even knocks him out and he is a large man.  Aside of that,  it doesn't help the body naturally clear itself of the viral infection, which is what the common cold is.  Drying up muscus secretions can lead to chronic sinus infections and other complications.  So tonight, my husband pulled a bottle of Nyquil from the medicine cabinet but before he could take a dose, I told him to check the expiry date.

All medications including dietary supplements have expiry dates.  Unlike the expiry dates on food where the quality is diminished and yet the food may still be safe to consume, the expiry dates on many prescription and OTC drugs mean the drug should not be consumed after that date.  One of the reason is, all these products are synthetically made and synthetic chemicals breakdown over time.  In some cases, one or more chemicals in the drug start to breakdown and they can form toxic by-products that can be quite dangerous even toxic when consumed.  In other cases, especially with sunblocks, the active ingredients breakdown becoming ineffective meaning you can get a rather nasty sunburn even though you thought you were protecting yourself with sunblock.

I'm very, very careful to go through our medicine cabinet every month.  Living between two houses makes it a bit more difficult because items travel back and forth but still, it is even more reason for me to check to be sure something doesn't get pushed to the back.  His bottle of Nyquil was expired.  He had pulled the bottle from his overnight travel bag likely because that's where he remembered it was and I had never thought to check that bag.  I gave him a fresh bottle of Nyquil and he is sleeping like a baby but this serves as a reminder.  Teach everyone in your home to always check the expiry date before consuming any prescription or OTC drug including dietary supplements.  Never consume either if past the expiry date.