15% of Americans Are Abusing Pain Medications

April 21, 2018

If you're like 45-50 million Americans, you may be abusing a drug and not even realizing it. If you're in pain, it's only natural to seek relief. But you need to be careful that you don't overdo it, or you could set your body up for additional pain down the road.

I'm not talking about misuse of prescription medicines or even addiction, though those are serious issues as well. However, many people, even those who are vigilant about using prescription medications properly, never stop to read the labels on over-the-counter pills. They just assume that they can pop one (or several) whenever they're in pain. After all, if the effects have worn off, it's safe to take another dose, right?

Wrong. Overusing drugs, particularly nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like ibuprofen (Advil), naproxen (Aleve), or Celebrex, can lead to GI bleeding and even heart attacks. Yet almost everyone uses these drugs at least monthly, and some people use them far more often than that.

Researchers at Boston University's Slone Epidemiology Center led a study for the journal Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety to determine just how widespread the misuse is. The researchers had approximately 1,300 participants who had taken ibuprofen in the last month track their daily NSAID use for a week. The researchers examined how much they took and evaluated typical usage against the recommended guidelines.

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Sure enough, about 15% were exceeding the recommended doses, whether by taking too much at a time, taking another dose too soon, or combining more than one NSAID. Many of the respondents who were exceeding the recommended doses were in chronic pain or poor health overall, and some either didn't know or didn't care about the recommendations. More information about the risks associated with overuse could help change these attitudes.

I certainly don't want you to be in chronic pain. But I don't want you to run the risks associated with these drugs either. So, try to avoid using these drugs on any kind of a regular basis for chronic pain. Remember that pain is your body's way of telling you that something is wrong. So if you're experiencing chronic pain, you need to talk to your doctor to see if you can get to the root of it rather than constantly covering up symptoms. Of course, if the problem is bad enough to take NSAIDs regularly, you probably should see a doctor versed in Prolozone®. You can find that doctor at www.aaot.us.

You also should look for alternatives to NSAIDs to help you manage your pain without increasing your risks of other issues. There are plenty of natural solutions that can help. For example, if you suffer from knee or joint pain, give Ultimate Knee Relief a try. It contains natural anti-inflammatories, not drugs, so it won't increase your risk of a heart attack or cause bleeding in the digestive tract. And make sure your lifestyle choices aren't contributing to inflammation either. Eating a healthy diet and engaging in healthy sleep, exercise, and relaxation habits can go a long way toward reducing pain stemming from overall inflammation.

Yours for better health,

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