Posted: Monday, November 30, 2009 8:01 pm
Dear Annie: I am a 16-year-old girl who still wets the bed. I have tried everything from wearing an alarm to taking medication.
I am now on a prescription that works by telling my kidneys to stop producing urine, although it doesn’t work all the time. A urologist prescribed an antidepressant that prevents me from sleeping too deeply. With the combination of these two medicines, I no longer wet the bed. However, the antidepressant causes me to be uncontrollably angry all the time. I also don’t sleep well when I take it, which just adds to my irritability. It has gotten so bad that it has started to affect my relationships with friends and family.
My mom wants me to keep taking it because it works. But, Annie, I don’t like being angry all the time, and I don’t want to be on medication for the rest of my life. What can I do? — At a Loss
Dear At a Loss: Most teens with enuresis are exceedingly deep sleepers, and many also have a small bladder, exacerbating the problem. We assume you have been screened for diabetes and a genetic link, and that you don’t drink alcohol. Many sufferers do well with a moisture-sensor alarm, and we’re sorry that doesn’t work for you. The other common treatment is the medication you currently are using. However, since you are having unpleasant side effects, please discuss this with your doctor. It’s possible your dosage can be altered so you can still get the benefits without such a big emotional swing. Also discuss exercises to strengthen and enlarge your bladder. For more information and to keep abreast of new developments, contact the National Kidney Foundation (kidney.org) at 1-888-WAKE-DRY (1-888-925-3379).
Dear Annie: I recently had a semi-emergency and needed to go to the pharmacy to ask what medication to purchase. The pharmacy tech said I needed to speak to the pharmacist directly, but he was on the phone. I could hear him say, “I don’t know anything about that” and “No, I was not involved in that.” Over and over. The conversation went on and on while I stood there for 10 minutes. I was the only customer. Finally, I picked up what I thought was the right product and left.
I have no problem with people answering the phone while waiting on me in a store, but I thought this was too much. What is the proper thing to do regarding phone conversations and waiting customers? — Indianapolis
Dear Indy: The customer in the store should take precedence over whoever is on the phone. However, in a pharmacy, a phone call may represent a pressing medical need. In your case, it sounds like the conversation could have been a lawyer’s office. We doubt the pharmacist would have wanted to hang up on that one.
Dear Annie: You missed the boat with the letter from “Lost in Ohio,” the high-school junior whose ex-girlfriend has an eating disorder. You recommended contacting the Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders organization. My daughter also had an eating disorder. Her life was saved when her concerned friends talked to the school counselor and school nurse. They worked with our family to get us the support and help she needed. — Someone’s Mom
Dear Mom: You are right that the school counselor and school nurse can be of enormous help, and we were remiss not to suggest both. However, some schools do not have those resources, and in many instances, students prefer not to report a classmate to a school authority figure. In such cases, ANAD can provide much-needed information and resources. We should have recommended all three. Thanks for reminding us.
Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, P.O. Box 118190, Chicago, IL 60611. To find out more about Annie’s Mailbox, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
Published in The Messenger 11.30.09