Friday, September 9, 2011

New uses for old meds

I had a dry patch on my chin for a few weeks and no matter what I used, it would not go away.  Finally, I found the miracle cure:  diaper cream!  Why would I put diaper cream on my face you ask...I say, why NOT? (I once had a co-worker tell me to take my baby's pee soaked diaper and wipe it on my face for a beautiful complexion...pee diaper? No. Diaper cream? Sure!) The diaper cream worked great and there is no more dry spot on my chin.

Modeling my mom's 1960's sunglasses, notice the dry patches.
Actually, I have a history of using creams/ointments that are meant for one type of ailment to cure something completely different.. My dive into pharmaceutical experimentation began when I was in grade school. I grew up in Kansas and we had a LOT of mosquitoes.  I fricking HATE mosquitoes.  HATE.  They hate me too...or love me.  They bite me more and I swear they make me itch more than anyone I know.  I also get giant welts from the little bastards.  Did I mention I hate them?
This is Luka's arm but mine look like this.  Not cool.
One summer when I was still in grade school I had been bitten into insanity.  I was determined to cure the painful itching, and calamine lotion was not cutting it.  I dug into my parents medicine cabinet and started to experiment.  I tried triple antibiotic ointment and all the usual suspects, nothing helped.  Then I picked up a small tube of ointment with a big "H" on it. was THAT "H".

Here is what it said:
  • Coats to prevent further irritation, itching and discomfort from hemorrhoids

  • Shrinks swollen hemorrhoidal tissue

  • Protects irritated hemorrhoidal tissue

  • Relieves external and intrarectal discomfort

  • Apply to the affected area up to 4 times daily, especially at night, in the morning or after each bowel movement. For Intrarectal Use: Before applying, remove protective cover from applicator. Attach applicator to tube. Lubricate applicator well, then gently insert applicator into the rectum. Thoroughly cleanse applicator after each use and replace protective cover. Also apply ointment to external area.
    I didn't know what rectums, hemorrhoids or bowl movements were and I was completely clueless about the word Intrarectal but it sounded perfect for a bunch of itchy mosquito bites.  It had an awesome applicator too!  It was a long tube with little holes all up and down so when you squeezed the tube the ointment came out like little happy worms!  Amazing right?!?!?   I was thrilled to take that tube and rub it all over my neck, arms and legs.  (What the hell?!?!?!)  It worked great.  I used up that whole tube (up to 4 times daily) and every time I used it, I was so excited to use that awesome applicator.  I took the empty tube and applicator to my mom and asked her why on earth she had not shared this secret mosquito bite ointment with me before....
    I honestly don't remember her response.  I only remember the overwhelming feeling of mortification. It has to be my most embarrassing memory ever (and I fell down an entire flight of bleachers at high school graduation).  Now-a-days I just use Off! and try to avoid the bites all together.  Even when I do get bitten I can't bring myself to use Preparation H, the memory is just too humiliating.

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