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When are Health Shortcuts Worth the Risk?

We all take the occasional risk with our health for one reason or another like eating pizza leftover from a week ago or keeping our disposable contact lenses a couple of days longer then the expiration date. Usually these shortcuts result in no more then an upset tummy at worse but do you know which risks are ok and which could really hurt you? Fox News posted an article on September 9, 2011 which tells us what the real risk is for some common health shortcuts.

  1. Wearing contacts past the expiration date

    Always toss your contacts when you are supposed to, says Thomas Steinemann, an associate professor of ophthalmology at Case Western Reserve Medical School, in Cleveland: "Even when you clean and disinfect them, lenses and lens cases become coated with germs and protein over time."

  2. Sharing medications like sleeping pills

    No matter how tempting it may be to pop one of your wife's prescription sleeping pills, don't.

    "When the doctor wrote the prescription, he took into account your husband's overall health and any other drugs he might be taking," says Rick Kellerman, M.D., president of the American Academy of Family Physicians.

  3. Going barefoot in the gym shower

    Might be worth the risk, but it can lead to fungi such as athletes foot or onychomycosis, an infection that turns toenails hard and yellow, says Jane Andersen, a podiatrist and a spokesperson for the American Podiatric Medical Association

  4. Not finishing all of your antibiotics

    Many of us will skip taking the last few pills of a round of antibiotics because we feel better but skipping them may be a bad idea.

    "Researchers have figured out how much, how often, and how long you need to take the antibiotics to kill all the bacteria," says Dr. Rick Kellerman Take the medicine until the bottle is empty.

  5. Taking more then the recommended dosage on that OTC pain reliever

    Taking a single extra tablet when your headache is especially fierce will probably not hurt you since there is a safety range built into the dosage instructions but if you find you need more then the recommended daily dosage it may be time to consult a physician.

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