Are you Addicted to Pain Killers and are There Any Alternatives
If you go to your medicine cabinet and open it, surely you will find at least one half empty bottle of pain killers. These medications are everywhere.
According to the latest studies, 70% of all Americans take at least one pill within a week.
Addicted to Pain Killers
The Americans are the only population in the entire world that takes 80% of the world’s pain killers. They pop them for everything, from joint and muscle pain to stomach aches.
But before you open your medicine cabinet the next time, stop and think. All of us consume a great deal of pain killers, and most of the effects are unknown to the wider mass of people.
Because we can become dependent on them, let’s take a deeper look into what the pain kilers really are comprised of and how they affect a person’s health.
When we experience pain, it is the body’s way of telling us that we are doing something wrong. Maybe in the future we will not have to deal with it, if the medicine becomes more advanced, but right now we have no other choice.
The only way we deal with the pain is with the pain killers.
There have been many treatments for the pain, from drilling small holes into the head to using opiates. But the Middle Ages set the pace for us when the first pain killer was invented.
Since then we have been addicted to it. And thanks to that, today we have various types of pain killers – antidepressants, topical agents, acetaminophen, NSAIDs, muscle relaxants, anticonvulsants, opioids.
But how to pick out the perfect pain killer to soothe your pain?
- Aspirin is the most commonly used drug around the world. It is one of the anti inflammatory drugs.
- Ibuprofen has similar effects as the aspirin, but on a milder level and with less side effects. It was originally designed to treat arthrtis. But it can irritate the stomach and lead to bleeding with people who use blood thinners.
- Naproxen is very similar to the Ibuprofen, and was approved for over-the-counter use in 1994 by the FDA.
- Acetaminophen is a mild pain killer and has no anti inflammatory properties, but it is much better for the stomach, so if you have to choose, we suggest you choose it.
- Combination drugs are medications designed to treat multiple symptoms at the same time. They are a mixture of pain killers, diuretics and decongestants. But, the doctors usually recommend that you take one pill for one specific pain every day, instead of piling yourself up with these combinations.
- Prescription pain killers are definitely the most serious group. They include morphine and similar drugs, such as fentanyl, oxycodone and buprenorphine. They are the strongest pain killers that exist. They should not be taken without an order from the doctor and a previously created long term pain management plan.
What you have to remember right now is that just because some medicine has been used for years and is over-the-counter available, it does not mean it can do you much good. For whatever regular pain you may be experiencing, you usually turn to the NSAID.
They include Aleve, Celebrex and Advil and Mortin.
And even though these medications can ease the inflammation and pain, people with serious health issues should stay away from them. Why? Because the NSAIDs can cause a high blood pressure, risk of a heart attack, or even increase the risk of a kidney falure.
The FDA left the warning for the health of the heart on the naproxen until it has proven it is completely safe to use. The NSAIDs can also affect the work of the blood pressure drugs, including the diuretics, ARBS and the ACE inhibitors.
The long term use of the NSAIDs can lead to water retention, irregular heartbeat, swollen ankles, shortness of breath, and a kidney disease. This is why when taking them, you should stay hydrated at all times!
The AHA (American Heart Association) strongly recommends that if you are suffering from a chronic condition or an injury, take the approach that doesnot involve drugs, but involves physical therapy and heating or cold pads.
Now let’s take a look at the more natural approach to relieving the pain. Because many people seek a natural version too, here are some alternatives that you may find useful.
- Capsaicin desentisitizes the the pain prone skin and diminishes soreness within three weeks, and it is the main component of the chile pepper, but you can also find it in a form of ointment or cream in pharmacies and health stores.
- Arnica derives from a European flower, has anti inflammatory properties and is taken orally. Reduces swelling and pain.
- Aquamin is a red supplement rich in magnesium and calcium. Reduces the inflammation of the joints and even builds up the bone.
- InflaThera or Zyflamend are supplements found in turmeric, ginger, holy basil, and contain anti inflammatory properties. They ease conditions such as psoriasis and arthritis, but you will have to consult with your doctor prior to taking them.
- And finally, the fish oil, whose benefits are close to countless. Reduces inflammation, great for easing the arthritis pain, and excellent for the heart health!
Just remember not to make the mistake to go and try to treat your pain with natural compounds without telling it to your doctor first. Of course, they will not recommend a natural approach as a first choice, but if you choose it, they will do anything to help you and face you towards the right direction.
Finally, ask your doctor before taking any medications. Seriously. You have to figure out what the right drug for you is before taking it.
Don’t let the pain dominate your life, but some of these drugs are good and some are bad for you. Ask before consumption!