The last time I relied this much on 'symptom-killers' was in the Autumn of 2007. Knee damaged, overworked and illness-ridden lead to the consumption of anything that would dull the pain to the point that I could function. It wasn't an addiction by any means. I never took more than advised and would often forget to take any at all. The bad mornings though, those were the days of paracetamol/codeine/espresso cocktails. They left me numb to the pain but buzzed, fuzzy and tweaked for the rest of the day. Comfort, which was all I sought, never came.
Now, three years later, I'm typing this with a sinus headache that punishes movement and even the slightest change in altitude. I've given up on the pills and am drinking a beer that will be followed by a wee dram. My ears need popped every minute or two and I don't cough as much as I should because it makes my head hurt too much. Bizarrely, the only time my head feels clear is when I'm running. I've done two days in a row, a six-miler and 4-miler. There's no pain at all. There's clarity and it's keeping me sane at the moment.
It's not comfort, but it'll do.