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Pain Relief Medicine

Pain is a feeling of discomfort or tenderness that can affect the way an individual feels overall. Severe illness can also lead to harsh psychological conditions, such as anxiety and depression. The amount of pain which someone feels can tell his/her doctor a lot about an individual’s overall health.

Acute pain occurs suddenly, usually in a matter of weeks or days. This type of pain (discomfort) tends to resolve within a couple of weeks. Chronic pain or long-term pain is an ongoing pain that lasts for more than three months. Sometimes it can stay longer up to 6 or more than six months.

Pain relief methods range from home treatments and prescription medications to over the counter drugs and invasive procedures like surgery.

What common types of pain exist?

There are two significant types of pain neuropathic pain and nociceptive pain.

Nociceptive pain is a response from the nervous system that helps protect the human body. It makes individuals pull their hand back from firing object or an object that can harm their body. This type of pain forces people to take rest and give the injury time to heal.

Neuropathic pain is a different pain type of pain that has no known benefits or advantages. They may be a result of misread signals between the human brain and nerves; it can also be occurred due to nerve damage.

Pain Relieving Medications

Over the counter pain relievers “OTC.”
Over the counter pain relievers, including acetaminophen and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs that are available to buy without a doctor’s prescription.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAIDs) relieve conditions related to inflammation after blocking COX-1 and COX-2 receptors. NSAIDs are helpful for pains like:

  • Backache
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches
  • Menstrual pain
  • Arthritis and
  • Sprains and other minor injuries

Prescription drugs

These are controlled drug substances that can’t be purchased without a written label from a doctor. A certain nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory like diclofenac is only available with a prescription.

Stronger narcotics (opioids) such as hydrocodone and oxycodone work to prevent more severe pain, including surgery or severe injury. These drugs are manufactured from illicit drug opium. They are known for euphoric effects and pain-relieving properties.

There is a risk with the use of opioids as they are very addictive and can create a pleasurable experience that some users want to replicate over and again, all while causing tolerance and require a high amount of dosage to achieve the same effects.

Corticosteroids

They work by suppressing and thus reducing the immune system’s inflammatory response. These medications also relieve pain by reducing inflammation. Doctors prescribe them to treat inflammatory conditions, including inflammatory arthritis.

Steroid drugs include:

  • Methylprednisolone
  • Hydrocortisone
  • Prednisone
  • Prednisolone

Opioids

Opioids are also known as narcotics, which are powerful pain-relieving agents. Some of them are made from poppy plants when others are produced in the laboratory. They can be indicated for acute pain like pain after surgery or for chronic pain due to any long-term condition.

They are available in both extended-release and immediate-release forms. Sometimes they come in combination with other non-opioid drugs like acetaminophen.

Opioid products can include:

  • Tramadol (Ultram)
  • Oxycodone (OxyContin)
  • Oxymorphone (Opana)
  • Hydromorphone (Exalgo ER)
  • Hydrocodone and acetaminophen (Vicodin)

Although narcotics may be highly effective, and also very addictive. Misuse or abuse of such medication can lead to serious side effects, overdose, and death.

Antidepressants

These medications were designed to manage depression, but they may also help with chronic pain from specific conditions, including nerve damage and migraine.

Doctors still don’t know the exact mechanism of action of antidepressants. Antidepressants might reduce pain sensation by affecting and increasing the activity of a chemical messenger called neurotransmitters in the spinal cord and brain.

Anticonvulsant

Medications that treat seizures also do double duty by relieving pain, especially for nerves that are damaged by conditions like shingles and diabetes that are over-sensitized like in fibromyalgia overreact and send lots of pain signals.

Other alternatives

  • Cold and Heat
  • Exercise
  • Physical therapy
  • Therapeutic massage
  • Outlook for pain relief
  • Yoga & Music
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