CYNERGY: Warning — Viewer discretion advised

Cynthia Burton
Cynthia Burton

Rheumatoid arthritis. Irritable bowel syndrome. Acid reflux. Memory loss. Ulcerative colitis. Dry eyes. Type 2 diabetes. High blood pressure. Depression. Psoriasis. Erectile dysfunction. Bipolar disorder. Osteoporosis. Cancer.

Are these all maladies that accompany the stress of watching your team play in the World Series? Ever develop any of these bothersome afflictions after a prolonged visit from the in-laws, or perhaps before their arrival? Does the thought of the hectic holidays on the horizon just make you sick? Has the anticipation of voting for our next president driven your mental health into a downward spiral? If you hear the name Kardashian, do one of these immediately manifest?

Exposure to one or all of these medical issues is at your fingertips (including the Kardashians). Seriously. Every one of these damning disorders and cumbersome conditions is up for discussion and certainly ripe for the viewing constantly on television. It’s a virtual blitzkrieg of prescription and over the counter drugs that can lengthen your life span, manage muscle pain, invigorate your intestines and deter your depression.

Frankly, I can’t remember the last time I turned on the 5:30 p.m. news and was not assaulted by commercials trumpeting the terrific results of those who take that memory booster derived from a substance found in jellyfish (and it isn’t jelly). I can’t recall when a graphic illustration of intestines wasn’t flashed on the screen to make me aware that there is indeed hope for my boisterous bowels and unruly digestive system. I’m certain you’ve been exposed to advertisements touting the effectiveness of a certain little blue pill (now available in single packs) to rejuvenate your love life and restore your masculine prowess. Pharmaceutical companies are enjoying and exploiting their injections, pills and patches to encourage their use and make several billions of dollars.

The side effects warnings that accompany the commercials, although I suppose medically necessary to reveal, are, in my opinion, alarming and cause for loss of appetite. It’s difficult for me to finish my dinner when possible diarrhea, dizziness, sleeplessness, weight gain, heart failure, suicidal thoughts and death are blatantly recited for my information. Gross!

Pepto Bismol and Alka Seltzer are tolerable commercials — even humorous. Tums and Zantac? Fine. I’m making a plea for the constant bombardment of pharmaceuticals commercials to be (a) abolished, (b) shortened or (c) the explicit side effects to be deleted from content.

Warning: Viewing these drug commercials can seriously alter your sense of well-being and the perception of your health. Buyer beware. Viewer take care. Side effects: nightmare.

Cynthia Burton is a Destin resident and former U.S. Marine.