WHO CAN PRESCRIBE MEDICINE ???
Physician v/s Pharmacist v/s Commercial Advertisements v/s Self
When we get ill we need medicines and to get medicines we have a lot of sources. But first see what is a Disease. It is an impairment of heath or a condition of abnormal functioning of body. When a person gets ill, medicines are the cure for the disease and a person may get medicine from many sources. Some of them are reliable and trustworthy whereas some are to be avoided.
Most common, reliable and trustworthy method of treatment is to ask a physician. A physician correlate different aspects of a disease which includes clinical signs and symptoms, lab investigations, age and other physical characteristics of a person then prescribe medicine accordingly. These medicines are in proper dose and according to the patient.
Many times doctors are consulted before starting medication but sometimes a pharmacist or other means are adopted which are neither ethical nor healthy. Therefore should be avoided. But many a times a person wants to save a few minutes of waiting in a doctors reception and a small amount of money which is paid to the doctor as consultaion. Instead of going to a doctor or a physician they go to a local chemist and ask for medicines either by describing their symptoms to the chemist( who is not a doctor) or by directly asking for the medicine by describing color of medicine or packing of it like: bhaiya wo peeli wali goli dena pet dard ki jo hari panni me aati hai.(brother please give me yellow colored pills for stomach pain which comes in green packing). Pharmacist are educated enough to sell medicines but are not qualified enough to prescribe them and also it is ill-legal to sell some medicines without prescription.
Commercial advertisements also suggests use of their product in certain conditions and these types of drugs or products are called as over the counter drugs or OTC drugs, but use of them without consulting a physician may be very harmful many times. Like a commercial shows use of certain paste for sensitive teeth but never explain various reasons for sensitivity. Suppose sensitivity is due to large size decay in a tooth and a person starts using anti-sensitivity paste then it will not cure the pain but will increase it after a few days as decay will progress further and which can previously be treated with filling may now need a root canal treatment, which is much more expensive and time taking then a small filling. Similarly if during pregnancy a lady takes any medicine for headache or back pain only after watching a commercial and without consulting a doctor then it may lead to severe problems to the mother and also various abnormalities in her baby also.
Another method of medication is self medication. When a person gets ill, instead of consulting a doctor they have medicine either by self partial knowledge through internet, friends or family members or by prescription of some other person may be their close friend or relative, who suffered with the same disease and their treatment cured their illness. So trusting their prescription other persons also have the same medicines which is harmful as medicines are prescribed by correlating different factors which may vary from person to person. As difference in cough in common cold and tuberculosis can be detected by a physician but it may seem to be similar to a pharmacist or friends and family members.
It is important to ask a physician before taking any medicine to maintain health in long term. Other methods of medications may seem to be beneficial by being cheep and less time consuming only immediately but have various harms and adverse long term effects.So it is always advisable to consult a physician before taking any medicine and complete the prescribed doses. It may be little expensive comparatively or may take more time but is actually beneficial in long term.