On Wednesday… I started feeling a little congested. I figured it was my usual season changing allergies that come around every year when the temperature gets warmer.. the ground thaws and pollen starts breaking free from it’s winter hibernation. I took an Allegra, and went about my business.
On Thursday – my left ear started hurting and started feeling very ‘full’ – affecting my hearing a bit. You know how you feel when you have water in your ear and you’re constantly trying to *pop* your ear to get it to drain? Yea, like that.
By Thursday night, it was unbearable.. so I headed to my doctors office to get it checked out. Anyone who know me knows that I don’t actually go see a doctor until whatever it is that’s bothering me is so bad that I can’t function anymore. By Thursday evening, my balance was affected – - I was experiencing dizziness.. so much so that my husband had to drive me to the clinic because I didn’t feel safe behind the wheel, because of the dizziness.
The doc took a look.. confirmed that I had a double ear infection (affecting both ears).. and sent me home with a prescription for 875mg Amoxicillin twice a day (an antibiotic) and 1200mg Guaifenesin twice a day (an expectorant; used to decrease congestion). Even though all of the symptoms I was experiencing was affecting my left ear only – - he told me that my right ear actually looked worse than my left one.
I started taking my pills, as prescribed, on Thursday.
By this morning…my symptoms in my left ear worsened by 300%! The pain tripled and was now affecting my neck, my jaw and the side of my face. The worst part of it? I lost my hearing in my left ear. Not sure if it was because of fluid build up, or that the ear canal had completely swollen shut – - but I could not hear out of my left ear at all.
I decided to hit the clinic again today, and visited the local walk-in clinic this afternoon.
I saw a different doc this afternoon and he changed my antibiotic to Cipro, gave me antibiotic ear drops and a script for Vicodin, for the pain. He also told me to pick up some Sudafed to help with the congestion.
Easier said than done!
I took my new prescriptions to the local Walgreen’s and dropped them off with the pharmacist. They filled the Cipro, ear drops and Vicodin and handed them over to me after I paid the bill.
Then I went to get some Sudafed. In and amongst all the cold meds on the shelf, there was a piece of paper with a picture of the Sudafed box on it and a message that says “Take this to the pharmacy window to pickup”.
So, I did. And I got carded! The pharmacy tech copied down my name, my address and driver’s license number – - and then I had to sign a piece of paper called the Sudafed registry.
Apparently, pseudoephedrine, the main ingredient in Sudafed, is used to make methamphetamine (Meth) – and in Wisconsin, at least, there is a bill that requires I.D. to purchase it, as well as a registry of the purchasers of Sudafed.
I could pick up my Vicodin prescription without presenting I.D. – - heck, my husband could have picked up my Vicodin prescription for me, if I wanted him to. But to get 12 Sudafed pills – - I have to sign a registry. Seems a little odd, to me.
How much pseudoephedrine does it take to make Meth, anyways? Somehow, I don’t think 12 Sudafed pills is going to do it – - but, then, I know nothing about making Meth – so who am I to question?
Last week, I was carded when I bought cleaning supplies at my local grocery store. The clerk explained that it was because some of the cleaning products I purchased were in aerosal cans – - and that requires an ID because kids will buy this stuff and sniff/inhale it. It’s a practice called ‘huffing‘.
It’s the government protecting us against ourselves, I guess. Stupid is as stupid does….
At any rate – I’m hoping this ear infection clears up pretty soon. Not being able to hear out of one ear is highly frustrating! The pain is intolerable and I’m just a big whiny baby during times like this.