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self medication is how people(like myself) tend to unconciously adjust their lifestyles to try and counter a personal weakness

an example of this is ADD
many many of the ex-hacker/online person category have ADD, and they "coincidentally" also consume a lot of caffiene. this is partly cultural, and partly a function of the fact that stimulants tend to give people who are afflicted with ADD a certain edge in controlling themselves.

other examples:
-the tendency of low self-esteem folks to use certain types of illicit drugs. such as E/X/Ecstasy/XTC, weed, etc.

-the tendency of people with stressful positions to use different illicit drugs, like amphetemines, blow, etc.

anyway, sexual self-medication takes advantage of the endorphin rush that sex brings. you feel good during/after sex.

generally
so persons who feel bad about themselves, or have other problems, can turn to sex much like a drug. it basically keeps you from thinking about anything that may be bothering you, and completely blanks out any feelings you may have. oddly, this is kind of similar to self mutilation. where people hurt themselves in order to drown out a painful feeling with physical pain. or to try and stop a "numbness". it's basically just the opposite pole of the same idea.

Many who have medical problems go first to a medical professional. Medicine is a fine profession, and it would be wonderful if we could all go to a medical professional with every trifle and get it professionally diagnosed and treated. However, there are problems with this method:

  • There are not enough medical professionals to treat every trifle. This can be unfortunate, since what seems a trifle could be grave indeed: for example, a slight chest pain could in fact be a life-threatening cardiac arrhythmia. However, if everyone went in with every stubbed toe or common cold, then wait times would be absurdly long -- oh, hey.
  • Wait times are absurdly long, at least for a non-emergency. One can suffer for quite a while ere ever getting remedy, especially from a specialist.
  • Professional time is dear, and such trifles waste it.

Rather, however, we could help ourselves, at least with small problems. One still ought to go to a professional for regular check-ups, of course, and for greater problems, and emergencies, but damn it, I can read a drug pamphlet as well as anyone literate, and if I have doubts, I can always ask the pharmacist. Furthermore, I can tell whether a drug is working at once, and choose the one that works best. Knowing some basic pharmacology also helps, but again, that's what the pharmacist is for. Let the medical doctors do the tricky diagnoses and surgery and whatnot and let us dispatch the little problems on our own.

Of course, if we lived in a free country (which mine isn't, quite), we already could.

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