It’s time for another round of “Which Is Worse?" We'll compare two things that impact our health and see which we should skip.

  • Which is worse: Popping an OTC headache pill or coping with pain? Dr. Adam Cifu is a professor of medicine from the University of Chicago. He says suffering in pain is worse than taking an over-the-counter pain reliever, and it’s unnecessary. He says products like Tylenol, Advil or Aleve are safe for occasional use. They only become problematic if you’re taking them several times a week, for weeks on end. If that’s the case, you probably have “rebound headaches” from taking too much medicine. Dr. Cifu says overusing pain pills affects the way nerves receive pain messages from the brain. If you think that’s what’s going on, the rebound effect will fade over a few weeks. Also, using pain pills daily, for weeks on end, can cause kidney and stomach problems. The bottom line is: Go ahead and take a pill for occasional pain. If you feel you need them more than twice a week, you need to see a doctor. 

  • Next, which is worse: Going to the bathroom in a porta-potty or holding it? They’re actually both fine. Even though a porta-potty may seem disgusting, the chances of catching anything from using one are slim, less than 1-percent. You’re more likely to catch something from the door handle. If you just can’t get over the gross factor, occasionally holding your bladder won’t hurt you. It’s when you do it repeatedly that it can cause urinary infections. 

  • One last “which is worse” conundrum: Having a margarita by the pool or a beer? While all alcohol mixed with hot weather will cause dehydration, the margarita will hit you harder. Alcohol inhibits a hormone that lets our kidneys absorb water. So the more alcohol you drink, the less water your body can use. And mixed drinks, like margaritas, can have a lot more alcohol than a beer.  Mixed drinks are poured free-hand, whereas a beer is a controlled amount. Plus the alcohol volume is higher. So when you’re out in the sun, it’s best to stick with non-alcoholic drinks or have two glasses of water for every one drink.