Band helps with Zoloft dizziness

peoples pharmacy

October 25, 2007|By Joe Graedon and Teresa Graedon

I recently weaned myself off Zoloft after taking it for six years for depression. Although I reduced the dose very slowly, I became extremely dizzy, to the point of being bedridden. Then I remembered having similar vertigo on a cruise ship. Although the Zoloft vertigo was much worse than seasickness, the acupressure wristbands worked.

We are glad the wristbands helped conquer your dizziness. This side effect can be troublesome when people stop antidepressants like Effexor, Paxil or Zoloft. Gradual tapering of the dose may help ease other symptoms such as sweating, nausea, chills, insomnia or headache.

I recently took my husband for a consultation before his colonoscopy. He wants to get the drink now to clean his colon and then take it again the day before the procedure. Is there any danger to this?

I understand he wants the doctor to get a good view of his colon and is afraid taking the drink the day before is not going to be enough.

Your husband may be watching too much cable television, where they talk about detoxification and colon cleansing. After he does this once, he might not be so enthusiastic about repeating the procedure right away. It is unlikely to make him feel better.

If your husband follows the doctor's instructions carefully, his colon will be clean for the procedure. Side effects may include nausea, bloating, cramping and anal irritation.

You folks are ridiculous, superstitious and ignorant. How can you recommend a bar of soap under the bottom sheet for leg cramps? It's just plain dumb. Please spare us such silliness.

We agree that putting a bar of soap under the bottom sheet sounds silly. But though we can't explain how it might work, we assure you that many people have found it helpful.

Testimonials are no substitute for scientific study, but soap is inexpensive and doesn't usually have dangerous side effects. Here is what one reader says: "I hesitated to try the bar of soap for my leg cramps, but finally I decided to give it a try. I did not tell anyone, because I just knew it wouldn't work. Surprise! It worked!

"Then one night it didn't, but the next morning I discovered the bar had slipped down off the side of the bed without my knowing. This sort of proved to me that it wasn't all in my head.

"At home I use regular Irish Spring, and by the time the bar in the shower needs replacing, I take the bar that's been in the bed, move it to the shower and put a new bar in the bed. When I'm traveling I find that the small hotel soap bars also work. I've even gotten up the nerve to tell other people about it."

I have been told to take cherry juice for joint pain. Where can I find it?

Cherries have anti-inflammatory activity, and one study found that 280 grams (about 10 ounces) of cherries a day reduced inflammatory markers in the blood (Journal of Nutrition, June 2003). When cherries are not in season, cherry concentrate softgels are a good substitute. You can find them in health-food stores or on the Internet.

I read that if you had really bad foot odor that all you had to do was urinate on your feet to make it go away. I tried this, and not only did the odor go away, but the bad, painful peeling of the skin on the bottom of my feet went away also. Why would that happen?

Soldiers have used this military secret for decades to treat foot fungus and odor. Perhaps the acidity of the urine does the trick. Urea, an ingredient of urine, may also have anti-fungal activity.

In their column, Joe and Teresa Graedon answer letters from readers. Write to them in care of this newspaper or e-mail them via their Web site: peoplespharmacy.com.

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