Everyone is familiar with painkillers, doctors recommend them when we’re sick and we use them to treat backaches, but unfortunately painkillers aren’t always as effective as we’d like, because they only treat the symptom and not the underlying problem.
Paracetamol, together with an anti-inflammatory medication, is recommended for pain that is associated with inflammation, such as that of a back strain or headache.
If it is damaged or sensitive nerves causing the pain, as with conditions like sciatica or shingles, the pain is usually treated with tablets that are prescribed contrarily for epilepsy and depressive disorders. This medicine acts on the central nervous system.
Medicine is meant to increase our well being. You should carefully weigh the risks and benefits, as all painkillers can potentially cause unwanted side effects.
Aspirin, Paracetamol, Codeine, anti-inflammatory
Aspirin — Aspirin can have the same side effects as other anti-inflammatory medications, but it does not offer particularly good pain relief. Aspirin is usually not prescribed for pain, and has potentially grave consequences for children younger than 12.
Paracetamol — Two pills can be used for a maximum of four times daily and this is verified to be a good adult dosage. Side effects are rare and this amount can be used regularly for a long time. Overdosing on paracetamol can lead to grave side effects. It is typically taken as a headache treatment and many non-nerve aches. If your pain becomes worse, you shouldn’t take a higher dose, as this might make the condition even worse than it is.
You need to see your doctor if the pain continues for more than three days.
Anti-inflammatory Ibuprofen — Ibuprofen seems to work better when there is a definitive diagnosis of an inflammatory disease like having arthritis or being injured. It should not be taken for an extended time if you don’t have bad inflammation. If it is used for an extended time, there is a higher chance for stomach problems as well as hemorrhaging, kidney and heart trouble. Don’t take more than the suggested dosage since this will cause bad side effects to happen.
Codeine — Codeine is not very effective when taken alone. It is more effective when used in conjunction with paracetamol, and these paracetamol and low-dose codeine or co-cocadmol medications are available over the counter. Codeine has to be a prescription for higher amounts and also moderate amounts of pain medicine include Zydol and dihydrocodeine have to be prescribed.
Addiction can result with all of these painkillers, and this leads to unwanted side effects if you stop taking them, much the same as when someone tries to quit smoking. If addiction becomes a problem for you with these drugs, please seek out help by talking to someone you trust or a health care adviser, as overdosing on painkillers can be fatal.