Dear Annie: I have read your column and generally appreciate your advice. However, I thought you were being a bit short on the customer who complained about their take out.
I, too, consider myself to be slightly disabled. I have my limits as to how far I can comfortably cover in a day. Didn’t you notice that “Lost Customer in Wilmington” said he was mildly handicapped? Didn’t you think her walk to and from the restaurant might have reached its limit for the day? And how did he not give the waiter a chance to earn a tip? I hope he learned to always check his order before leaving an establishment – but he still had a right to expect his meal to be at least sufficient.
I also think that if he had left the meal in the bag and picked it up the next day, he probably would have been offered tonight’s meal free of charge or his money refunded, as well as the chance to gently let off steam.
Anyway, I think he deserved a little sympathy for a disappointing dinner. — Was there
Dear summer there: Thank you for sharing your perspective. I’m always for giving people the benefit of the doubt, even if it’s over a disappointing dinner. Your point about being sympathetic to his disability is good, and I sincerely appreciate it.
Dear Annie: In a recent column, a reader said that his wife was severely addicted to pain relievers after years of prescription, that she had not worked during those years, that she spent most of her time in bed, that she ‘she was breaking into pill chests and begging for more pills. You told him that his wife was seriously addicted to opioids. It’s entirely possible. However, it is not clear from the letter that his wife’s doctor was seen to diagnose addiction.
There are a number of other issues that could cause her to request more pain medication. For example, she may be desperate because her pain is insufficiently controlled. This can result in behavior that looks like addiction and is often referred to as “pseudo-addiction”. If it is a pseudo-addiction, it does not mean that the reader should give his wife additional pills. This means that a doctor with experience in pain control should be consulted. It is possible, for example, that another drug is more useful than several of its current drugs. However, it is not my call to make, nor that of his family, nor yours. It is the job of a pain specialist to make these decisions.
Some additional things you might want to know about opioid drugs and addiction: With long-term use of opioids, the body gets used to it, which is called tolerance. With tolerance, opioids become less effective at relieving pain, so over time more pain medication is often needed, even if the pain does not worsen. The resources you mentioned may be important to “Tired” and others in his or her position, whether or not a doctor has diagnosed opioid addiction. They provide information on drug addiction and abuse, ways to reduce the risk of opioid use and abuse, and support for caregivers. – A pharmacy student
Dear pharmacy student: Thank you for your thoughtful letter. I always like to hear from people who specialize in certain areas. Any type of drug addiction is serious and will always be taken seriously by a doctor, and a treatment plan should be in place.
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