Depression Due To Cough Drops

An uncommon side effect

I’ve been under the weather for the past ten days or so. Nothing the Covid-19 virus mind you, just a cold. I’m not one for running to the doctor whenever I get the sniffles, so I decided to just take it easy for a couple of days.

First, it was just a runny nose, but before long I started coughing. If the runny nose was annoying, the coughing drove me up the wall. During the day I was more or less quiet, but first thing in the morning and late at night I was plagued with one coughing fit after another.

To combat this cold, I stocked up on Aspirin, vitamin C, and a cough mixture. After a few days, I felt marginally better, but the cough stayed. So, I added cough drops to my cold-fighting arsenal. And they helped, the drops eased my cough within seconds.

After a day or two, I started feeling worse. Physically, I was improving, but mentally I was sinking into a dark pit. I didn’t feel like writing, I didn’t feel like reading, I didn’t care about what was on TV, and my hobbies remained untouched.

Now, this was very unlike me. I’m not the kind who gets depressed. I might have a blue day here and there, but in general, I’m usually in high spirits and if something gets me down, I bounce back in no time. I’m too busy to get depressed. So why was I suddenly feeling so out of sorts? Then it hit me, the cough drops.

Quite a few years ago I was also battling a nasty cough and along with a cough mixture, bought a packet of cough drops. They worked like a charm, but oh dear, after a day or two I was so depressed I didn’t care about anyone or anything anymore. In fact, when I went to work and my boss bothered me for the umpteenth time, I gladly would have told him where to go and where to stick his latest assignment. It would have gotten me fired, but I just didn’t care. Fortunately, it didn’t get that far. He could see that I wasn’t well and send me home.

The experience with the cough drops stayed with me though and when it happened again a year later, I knew to steer clear of those particular drops. When I researched the side effects of the cough drops, none were listed, but I know for a fact that my sudden depression was due to those drops.

Now the experience was repeated. Even though it used a different brand of cough drops, I once again felt like nothing interested me anymore. What’s more, I lost my appetite and my blood pressure dropped. This too I researched online and found that menthol, the most common ingredient in cough drops can reduce blood pressure and appetite. Well, that took care of that, I wasn’t taking those cough drops anymore. In less than twenty-four hours I felt marginally better. I’m still taking the cough mixture, but the cough drops were tossed in the bin.

Not everyone experiences the side effects of these cough drops, but it would seem that I am one of the few who does.

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