If you are in pain, whether it’s a minor ache or the result of intensive surgery, relieving that pain becomes a top priority. Since different pain medications work a variety of ways, it’s important to know what kind of medicine will most effectively help you manage your pain.
A medicine that helps with muscle pain might not be the best medicine for a headache. Learning and finding the one that will most efficiently treat your pain is crucial. Consulting a physician if you’re planning on taking any pain medicine regularly is always a good idea.
Pain medications are called analgesics. An analgesic is any drug used for the purpose of pain relief. These medicines are distinct form things like anesthetics, which work by shutting off sensations. Pain relief medicine usually works by affecting the nervous system in different ways.
Even some medicines that aren’t traditionally analgesics, like antidepressants and anti-anxiety medication, are being used to treat pain. People may have different reactions to different medicine, so it is always important to do your research on various medications.
There are a few main categories that help sort all the different types of medicines, ranging from over-the-counter medicines to prescription narcotics.
The Main Categories of Pain Medicine
Ø Paracetamol (Acetaminophen)
This is probably one of the most well-known and widely used pain medicines. How it works is not totally clear. Unlike Aspirin, it doesn’t help with swelling or inflammation. It is primarily used to treat minor aches and fevers. It was discovered in the late 1800s. Name brands of Paracetamol include Tylenol and Panadol. These are considered some of the most effective and safe medications for treating mild to moderate pain. It most commonly comes in pill form but is also available intravenously. The drug is generally safe to take while pregnant but can pass through into breast milk.
Commonly, it is combined with cold medicines, or other opioid pain relievers. Paracetamol is relatively safe and generally has few side effects; however, it is not completely without side effects. It is most commonly used for headaches, postoperative pain, arthritis, oral pain and back pain. Paracetamol is available over-the-counter.
The majority of people report very few side effects while taking Paracetamol, though side effects still may occur. The side effects are mostly experienced when there is an allergic reaction, when the drug is taken with alcohol, or when overdosed. Paracetamol may have negative interactions with blood clot, seizure, and tuberculosis medications. Paracetamol is found in hundreds of other medications, so make sure you are tracking the doses.
Side Effects of Paracetamol:
- Liver damage/failure
- Kidney damage/failure
- Skin irritation
- Shortness of breath
This is not a complete list of side effects other possible side effects may occur. If you experience any side effects while taking Paracetamol you should stop use and consult your doctor right away. Also, you should consult a doctor before taking if you are pregnant or have a history of liver and kidney problems.
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NSAID stands for non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug. NSAIDS as the name suggest are pain-relieving, inflammation reducing drugs that are not related to the steroid family. Generally used for acute pain some NSAIDS have other advantages. Aspirin, Ibuprofen, and Naproxen are among the most commonly used NSAIDS. These drugs work by reducing prostaglandins that cause pain and swelling resulting in pain relieve and reduced inflammation.
Aspirin is an NSAID and is another one of the most commonly used pain relievers in the world for mild to moderate pain. It was discovered in the mid 1800s. Brand name aspirin includes Bayer and Ecotrin. In addition, to helping with pain it has been proven to help with arthritis, heart attacks, and strokes. It is also an anti-inflammatory agent. It is also believed that aspirin lowers the risk of getting and dying from cancer.
Primarily available in pill form, it also comes in an effervescent tablet form. It should be taken with food and a glass of water. Aspirin is a relatively safe medicine and extreme adverse side effects are rare but may still occur. Make sure to consult with your physician before using long term.
The best uses for aspirin are muscle aches, toothaches, and headaches. Thought rare serious side effects may occur. Aspirin may worsen asthmatic conditions.
Side Effects of NSAIDS:
- Skin swelling
- Skin irritation
- Gastrointestinal pain
- Liver damaged
- Kidney damage
- Rash vomiting
More side effects are possible. Always consult a doctor if you are concerned about side effects.
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Ibuprofen is potentially one of the more effective of the NSAIDS at treating acute pain. Ibuprofen is available in pill form and intravenously. It is primarily used to treat headaches, sports injuries, muscle aches and arthritis. Popular Ibuprofen brands include Advil and Motrin. In was discovered in the mid 1900s and is available over-the-counter.
Compared to other drugs in this category in may have fewer side effects of Gastrointestinal disturbance. It may also increase your risk for heart, kidney, and liver failure. And Ibuprofen may help lower your risk for Parkinson’s disease.
Allergic and severe reactions to the drug are generally rare but may occur. Consuming Alcohol while taking Ibuprofen may increase chances of stomach bleeding. Like other NSAIDS, it has the potential to worsen asthma. Ibuprofen doesn’t’ appear safe doffing pregnancy; therefore, should be avoided.
Side Effects of Ibuprofen:
- High blood pressure
- Gastrointestinal irritation
Other side effects are possible. Contact a Doctor if you experience any side effects.
If you regularly rely on Ibuprofen to ease your pain, make sure you check out the natural, safer, and much more effective alternative: Arctic Blast – the 54 second solution to pain.
Naproxen is another popular member of the NSAID family. Brand names include Aleve and Anaprox. Naproxen is good for treating inflammation, kidney stones, menstrual cramps, migraines, bursitis and multiple forms of arthritis. Naproxen blocks enzymes that cause pain and swelling.
When naproxen is taken with alcohol it increases the risk of stomach bleeding. In addition, naproxen appears reduce and disrupt the effects of SSRI antidepressants. It may also have negative interactions with lithium, other antidepressants, blood thinners, diuretics, and other cancer medications.
Side Effects of Naproxen:
- Ringing in the ears
- Abdominal pain
- Shortness of breath
This is not a complete list of side effects and you should contact a physician if you experience any side effects.
If you regularly rely on Naproxen to ease your pain, make sure you check out the natural, safer, and much more effective alternative: Arctic Blast – the 54 second solution to pain.
Opioids are a narcotic pain medication. These drugs are good for treating and managing more chronic and severe pain, especially if the pain is not responding to other medications. They work by binding to opioid receptors and block pain signals from the nervous system. Opioids have been very effective at relieving acute pain, but also with also have show to work with severe chronic pain from conditions like Theumatoid arthritis or cancer. A doctor usually must prescribe these drugs, so you can work with your physician to figure out which drug might be best for you.
They come with very serious side effects if not taken properly. Its important to let your doctor know if you’re taking any other prescription, over-the-counter medicines, or herbal supplements because opioids may react negatively to them. These drugs can be addictive, or the user may build up a tolerance. If you are taking these drugs to reduce chronic pain, it’s important to work with your doctor on the dosage to manage your pain.
Side Effects of Opion Medication:
- physical dependence
- respiratory depression
If you regularly rely on Opiods to ease your pain, make sure you check out the natural, safer, and much more effective alternative: Arctic Blast – the 54 second solution to pain.
Codeine is an opiate and is generally found to be the lightest in the opioid family. It is also the most commonly taken opioid narcotic drug. It is most commonly use to treat moderate pain, a cough medicine, and to help with diarrhea. Often codeine is paired with another drug like an NSAID or paracetamol. In addition to being used for pain, it can be used to help treat things like IBS (irritable bowel syndrome).
Alcohol should be avoided when taking codeine. Other drugs may affect the codeine or may be affected by the codeine so make sure to consult a doctor before mixing with any other drugs or medications.
Side effects of Codein:
- Abdominal pain
More side effects may occur, some more serious like respiratory depression, extreme low blood pressure, and seizure. Codeine may also be addictive and create dependency.
If you regularly rely on Codein to ease your pain, make sure you check out the natural, safer, and much more effective alternative: Arctic Blast – the 54 second solution to pain.
Hydrocodone is a semi-synthetic opioid. Brand names for this medication are Vicodin or Norco. It is a derivative of codeine, but generally is a little stronger than codeine. Like Codeine, Hydrocodone may be paired with NSAIDS or paracetamol. Usually used to treat moderate pain it may also be used as a cough suppressant. It usually comes in two forms pill or a liquid form. This drug requires a prescription from a doctor. It can be habit forming so long-term use is generally not recommended.
This drug should not be consumed in conjunction with alcohol. It may also adversely affect serotonin inhibitors. If taken with antihistamines, antipsychotics, or anti-anxiety medication central nervous system depression may occur.
Side Effects of Hydrocodone:
- Mood swings
- Trouble urinating
- Trouble breathing
- Chest tightness
Hydrocodone overdosing can be fatal. Never take more than the recommended amount. This medication may be addictive, habit forming, or cause dependency.
Oxycodone was developed in the early 1900s in Germany. It is used for treating more moderate to severe pain. Quiet often, it is used to treat chronic pain after other methods have failed or have proven to be in adequate. Oxycodone has been found to increase quality of life in people with debilitating pain. It is stronger than both hydrocodone and codeine. It is not known exactly how it works, but instead of relieving pain it actually raises pain tolerance.
Brand names of this narcotic are Oxycontin and Percocet. It can come in single ingredient form, or in combination with non-narcotic medicines. In the United States it has only been approved for oral use, but in other countries it is also available intravenously and intramuscularly.
This drug can be very addictive and carries with it a high risk of dependency. If dependency occurs it is important to wean off the drug, rather than stop taking abruptly, as not to cause severe withdraw. When taken with other sedatives, anesthetics, alcohol, and other CNS depressants can cause respiratory depression. It is very important not to mix oxycodone with any other medications unless you’ve consulted a doctor first. Adjustments in dosage may be necessary.
Side Effects of Oxycodone :
- Loss of appetite
More serious side effects can include feelings of euphoria, respiratory depression, and low blood pressure. This is not a full list of side effects and you should contact a medical professional right away if you experience any abnormalities while taking this Drug.
Morphine is an opioid used to treat severe chronic and acute pain. It can be administered in a variety of ways orally, intravenously, intramuscularly, through the spinal cord, and rectally. Morphine was first discovered in the early 1800s and is derived from the poppy straw from opium poppy. Morphine can be highly addictive and prolonged use can cause serious dependency. Make sure to be extremely cautious when taking this drug.
Morphine, like the other opioids, can cause very serious reactions when taken with alcohol or in high doses. If you are on this narcotic make sure to avoid alcohol and other medications, unless okayed by a doctor first.
Side Effects of Morphine:
- Dry mouth
- Decreased sex drive
If you experience any side effects, you should contact a doctor immediately.
Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid used to treat severe acute and chronic pain. It is taken orally, skin patch, nasal spray, or in an injection. It was created in the 1960s and is one of the most commonly used synthetic opiates. Fentanyl is often used to treat pain in cancer patients as well as after major surgery. It also maybe used after heart attacks to help people experiencing poor heart functioning.
Fentanyl is one of the strongest opioids available on the market for human consumption. It is roughly 100 times stronger than morphine.
Similar to the other opioids, taking fentanyl while using alcohol can be extremely dangerous. You should consult your doctor before taking fentanyl with any other medication. This narcotic is very addictive and can adverse side effects.
Side Effects of Fentanyl:
- Dry mouth
- Respiratory Depression
More serious side effects may occur.
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