Painkillers for Pain Relief
Analgesic is a term used for any type of drug which is usedin order to relieve pain. The name for such drugs is derived from the Greekprefix an- which stands for without, and the word algos which means pain. Thereare numerous ways in which analgesics work, as some of them affect the centralnervous system while some others affect the peripheral nervous system. Mostanalgesics are completely safe to use if one follows the instructions from adoctor or a pharmacist. Analgesics can be purchased in all pharmacies and theycome in different forms such as liquids, soluble powders, suppositories,capsules and tablets. In most cases they are intended for oral use and some ofthem may also be helpful with certain other medical conditions and theirsymptoms such as cough, diarrhea, swelling, inflammatory conditions, flu, feverand common cold. Different people experience different effects of analgesics dependingon their weight, size and overall health. It is important to stress out thananalgesics should not be used on a long term basis because that may lead to thedevelopment of psychological dependence. One should never mix analgesics withalcohol or other types of over the counter and prescribed medications. If aperson mixes ibuprofen with Aspirin and alcohol it usually leads to discomfortand irritation in the stomach. Aspirin and ibuprofen should never be taken withany blood pressure medicines. If one mixes codeine with certain types ofantihistamines, antidepressants or benzodiazepines it may lead to increasedseverity of depression and a reduced breathing rate. Constant use of analgesicsmay serious affect one’s life and cause of lot of different types of socialproblems. Personal relationships and family values can get destroyed by thecommon frustration and disagreements over the use of drugs. One may also gethimself or herself involved with various health and legal problems which mayhave a very negative effects on the financial, personal and work relationships.Pregnant and breastfeeding mothers should steer clear of analgesics as much aspossible because it may lead to certain medical complications for both themother and the child.
According to various sources, analgesics are the most widelyused type of drug among students. 95 percent of students have used analgesicsat some time in their life, while approximately 43 percent of them tend to usethem frequently in order to deal with different medical problems. As the persongrows older he or she tends to use more and more analgesics. It is alsoimportant to stress out that female persons usually use analgesics much morethan male persons do. The most common reasons for the use of analgesics amongstudents include sports injuries, menstrual pain, dental work, toothache, flusymptoms, cold symptoms, migraines and headaches. Only a small number ofstudents use analgesics for no medical reasons.
Types of Analgesics
There are numerous different types of analgesics availableon the market, but all of them can be divided into several groups. Paracetamolis one of the most commonly used types of analgesics. Paracetamol tends toaffect the central nervous system. Very similar to paracetamol are the socolled NSAIDs which are actually non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Amongthe most common ones is the Aspirin and it is very efficient in inhibiting thecyclooxygenases which leads to the reduced production of prostaglandin andreduced inflammatory conditions and pain. Paracetamol may be associated withkidney damage and liver damage, while NSAIDs may be associated with Reye’ssyndrome, hemorrhage, hearing loss, allergic reactions, renal failure andpeptic ulcers. Another group ofmedications which is derived from NSAIDs is known as COX-2 inhibitors. Thesemedicaments are very efficient in blocking the COX-2 inducible cyclooxygenaseenzyme. They are superior to the NSAIDs because they are not associated withgastrointestinal hemorrhage. On the other hand, they may be associated withcertain cerebrovascular and cardiac problems. There are also certain types ofdrugs which are referred to as opiates and those include morphine, pethidine,dihydromorphine, hydrocodone, oxycodone and codeine, among others. Opioids andvery efficient in relieving the painful sensations, but unfortunately they mayalso be associated with certain unpleasant types of side effects. Among themost common ones are nausea and vomiting. Opioids are also often associatedwith itching and constipation, so they usually need to be accompanied bycertain types of laxatives. Opioids are very dangerous because they arecommonly associated with an increased risk of an addiction. Another type ofanalgesic which is commonly used is known by the name of flupirtine. It is acentrally acting K+ channel opener and it is usually used in cases of moderateto strong pain. Migraine sufferers also often rely on this medication. Thereare also other specific agents which may have certain analgesic properties andthose include anticonvulsants and tricyclic antidepressants.