A 56 year old male was on two oral medications for his diabetes.
His wife wanted to know why he had to take two different medications for the same disease.
I started a long discussion on the mechanism of action of the two medications but quickly determined they were not following what I had to say.
I decided to try a different approach.
Me: Do you all have a dishwasher at home?
Me: Does the dishwasher get your dishes clean if you put them directly into the dishwasher?
Wife: No, we always rinse the plates first before we put them into the dishwasher.
Me: So you need to do two things to get your dishes clean, right? Your husband has to take two medications to control his diabetes. They both help, in different ways, to keep the sugars lower.
Wife: Oh, now I see. That explains it, thanks.
I actually have no idea why I used a dishwasher for this analogy. Probably because I've washed a lot of dishes over the years and my wife gets annoyed with me when I try to skip the first step (the rinsing part that is).
For whatever reason, it seemed to work this one time.