Comparing Pain Meds For Osteoarthritis
Understand the pros and cons of different medicines for OA pain.
Exercise and weight loss are the best ways to beat osteoarthritis pain. But you may want to try other methods too. These include creams you apply to your skin , pills and joint injections. Knowing the pros and cons of these treatments can help you make the right choice.
Before you try pills, experts say you should try topical nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for your OA pain. These come by prescription liquids and patches . Gel is now available over-the-counter without a prescription. Studies show they can relieve knee pain just as well as pills, but with fewer side effects.
Other over-the-counter arthritis creams and patches include ingredients such as capsaicin, camphor, menthol and lidocaine. They can be used for as long as needed.
Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs NSAIDs are the most effective oral medicines for OA. They include ibuprofen naproxen and diclofenac . All work by blocking enzymes that cause pain and swelling.
The problem is that some of those enzymes also help blood to clot and protect the lining of your stomach. Without them, you can bruise easily, develop ulcers and may even bleed in your intestines. NSAIDs also increase your chance of heart attack, stroke and heart failure. The risk increases the longer you use them and the more you take.
Celecoxib is an NSAID thats less likely to cause gastrointestinal bleeding, but it can cause heart problems.
What Drugs And Food Should I Avoid While Taking Naproxen
Avoid drinking alcohol. It may increase your risk of stomach bleeding.
Ask a doctor or pharmacist before using other medicines for pain, fever, swelling, or cold/flu symptoms. They may contain ingredients similar to naproxen .
Avoid taking aspirin or other NSAIDs unless your doctor tells you to.
Ask your doctor before using an antacid, and use only the type your doctor recommends. Some antacids can make it harder for your body to absorb naproxen.
Naproxen Vs Ibuprofen: Which Pain Reliever Should You Choose
Naproxen and ibuprofen are two common over-the-counter pain relievers. People often reach for one of these when they have common aches and pains such as headaches, muscle pain, menstrual cramps, and arthritis.
Perhaps youre wondering which medication is best for your particular pain, or youre concerned about negative effects. Here is what you should know about Aleve vs. Advil and which pain reliever you should choose.
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Are There Other Major Side Effects Of Nsaids I Should Know About
NSAIDs can significantly disrupt blood flow to the kidneys, which could impair their ability to function and even lead to kidney failure over time. Youre at higher risk for serious effects if you or your family has a history of kidney problems, or if you have certain health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure. If your doctor determines that youre at risk of renal impairment or renal failure, NSAIDs may not be recommended.
You can read a more thorough list of NSAID side effects here, but you should talk to your doctor about which issues might be of particular concern for you.
Common Arthritis Medication For Pain Relief
- Tylenol is a pain reliever or analgesic drug. It can have side effects, especially if you take more that the recommended dosage
- Ibuprofen is an anti-inflammatory drug that is one of the Non Steroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs or NSAIDs. Other NSAIDs are aspirin or naproxen . These drugs can have side effects on the stomach and heart
- Exercise is medicine. Exercise can relieve pain and research suggests it can also reduce inflammation
- Taking ibuprofen within two hours of low dose aspirin will completely stop the heart health benefit from the low dose aspirin.
Arthritis hurts. No matter which of a hundred faces your arthritis presents, you will endure varying levels of pain. Little wonder, then, that the medical community prescribes and the pharmaceutical companies produce medications to combat pain and the inflammation that produces pain and joint damage. Your first stop may be a pharmacy. Faced with numerous over-the-counter options, the first step in choosing what may be right for you is to know what the common brands are, what they do, and what they do not do. Talk to your pharmacist and doctor if you have hot swollen joints or numerous joints with pain, as you may have a form of arthritis that requires early aggressive treatment. The online tool Arthritis ID will give you more information. This is the link to the tool: http://arthritisiscured.org/resources/arthritis_id/ . Delaying proper medical assessment and treatment may be detrimental to your long-term health.
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Is Taking Naproxen Dangerous
Naproxen isnt dangerous if youre only using it for short-term pain relief . Depending on why youre taking Naproxen, your doctor might only suggest taking it for a day or two, or you may need it for longer.
Using Naproxen for long-term pain relief isnt usually recommended, especially in strong doses. This is because there are health risks associated with taking Naproxen for long periods of time.
Taking Naproxen for a long time or in large doses can cause ulcers in your stomach or gut, as well as gastrointestinal bleeding and other problems. These risks can normally be offset by using a medicine called a PPI, such as omeprazole, to protect your stomach.
It may also result in heart failure with an increased risk of stroke, heart attacks and clotting problems and kidney failure.
If you find yourself taking Naproxen often, in large doses, or for long periods of time, then you should speak to your doctor or pharmacist. They will be able to discuss other pain relief options that will work better for you long-term.
Types Of Medication That Treat Rheumatoid Arthritis
When prescribing a medication, a physician will take into account the patients age, disease activity, and other medical conditions, but each patient is unique. Figuring out which medication or combination of medications work best for an individual can be challenging and often requires a process of trial and error.
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What Are Some Of The Warnings For Aleve
Heart Attack and Stroke
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like Aleve can increase your risk of heart attack or stroke . The risk may be higher in people on long-term treatment with NSAIDs. Talk to your doctor about the safety of taking Aleve or other NSAIDs if you have recently had a heart attack, or you have heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, or if you are a smoker. Seek emergency medical care if you experience symptoms like shortness of breath, chest pain, slurred speech, or weakness on one side of the body.
Taking naproxen sodium and other drugs in the NSAID category can cause ulcers, stomach bleeding, and intestinal bleeding. People with long-term NSAID use or NSAID use at higher doses, older individuals, and those with heavy alcohol use are at higher risk. Stop taking Aleve and call your doctor if you experience symptoms like heartburn, stomach pain, blood in your vomit, vomit that looks like coffee grounds, blood in your stool, or dark-colored stools.
Understand Your Arthritis Pain
Osteoarthritis can be caused by an injury to the joints, which can break down the cartilage â connective tissue that protects the joints by absorbing stress. What you can do about it:
â¢ OTC pain medications can help ease minor arthritis pain
â¢ Physical therapy and exercises can complement your treatment
â¢ Use hot and cold packs
â¢ Be sure to discuss with your doctor a treatment plan thatâs right for you
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How Long Should I Use An Over
Dont use an over-the-counter NSAID continuously for more than three days for fever, and 10 days for pain, unless your doctor says its okay. Over-the-counter NSAIDs work well in relieving pain, but theyre meant for short-term use.
If your doctor clears you to take NSAIDs for a long period of time, you and your doctor should watch for harmful side effects. If you notice bad side effects your treatment may need to be changed.
Overdose: What Happens If I Take Too Much Naprosyn
Taking too much Naprosyn can cause some common and less severe symptoms, including:
- Difficulty breathing
If you overdose on naproxen and go to the hospital, there are various methods of treatment to remove naproxen from the body. You may need to vomit or take activated charcoal to prevent further drug absorption.
In some instances, you might undergo a procedure called osmotic catharsis. You would only need osmotic catharsis if substantial amounts of Naprosyn are taken or if you are taken to the hospital within four hours of the overdose.
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What Is Aleve Used To Treat
Aleve is used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, juvenile arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, bursitis, tendonitis, gout attacks, strains, sprains, muscle aches, headache, menstrual cramps, dental pain, and fever.
Naproxen is also available in combination products. For example, Aleve PM is a sleep aid that contains naproxen and diphenhydramine to treat minor aches and pains and insomnia, and Treximet contains naproxen and sumatriptan to treat headaches.
Exercise And Mindful Movement
Regular exercise is a good way to ward off chronic pain and to reduce symptoms if it does develop. But certain types of movement may be more beneficial than others.
Tai chi has been shown to benefit people with fibromyalgia, for example, and yoga may help with back pain and arthritis. Even if these techniques dont necessarily decrease pain, they may help people cope with it better, says Nagda.
Nagda also recommends swimming to many of her pain patients, as a way to stay active and flexible without stressing their joints. And for injuries, she stresses the value of using heat and ice and seeing a physical therapist, rather than masking pain with a pill.
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Where To Turn For Pain Relief
The first line of treatment for many knee and hip problems includes taking over-the-counter pain medications. Acetaminophen and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen and naproxen are the most common pain medication options. However, these pain medications have a variety of side effects, so it’s important to discuss your personal health risks with your doctor when considering long-term use for chronic conditions such as osteoarthritis.
Acetaminophen is usually effective for mild pain and is easy on the stomach. However, it is toxic to the liver at high doses. The recommended maximum per day is generally set at 4 grams , which is the equivalent of eight extra-strength Tylenol tablets. But that dosage can still cause liver problems for some people. To be safe, aim for 3,000 milligrams or less, and be cautious of mixing multiple products containing acetaminophen, such as a pain reliever and a cold medication or a prescribed narcotic.
The FDA now recommends using products containing no more than 325 milligrams per pill or capsule in order to avoid excessive dosages. Don’t take acetaminophen if you drink more than a moderate amount of alcohol on a regular basis or if you have liver disease.
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Aleve For Rheumatoid Arthritis
Aleve is an over-the-counter medication used to treat pain, fever, and inflammation. It is also known by its drug name, Naproxen. Stronger doses of Naproxen are available by prescription. Aleve is used to treat joint pain, stiffness, and swelling caused by rheumatoid arthritis.Aleve should not be used by people who are allergic to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as Celebrex or Ibuprofen. Aleve should not be used by pregnant or breastfeeding women. Aleve may not be appropriate for people with liver or kidney problems.
Aleve is an NSAID. NSAIDs help reduce fever, pain, and inflammation. Aleve is believed to work by inhibiting the production of chemicals that promote inflammation in the body.
How do I take it?Always check with your doctor before taking a new medication, including over-the-counter medications.
Take Aleve according to directions given by your doctor or found on the medication package. Do not exceed the recommended dosage. When taking NSAIDs, it is important to use the lowest dose that is effective and to take it for the shortest amount of time in order to avoid side effects.
Take Aleve with food or after meals.
Always follow your doctors instructions exactly when taking Aleve.
Side effectsRare but serious side effects of Aleve can include gastrointestinal bleeding, damage to the liver and kidneys, and increased risk for heart attack or stroke.
Seek medical help immediately if you experience symptoms of an allergic reaction such as
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Aleve Dosages And Forms
Aleve over-the-counter comes in 220 mg. But other naproxen brands are available by prescription and dosages can go as high as 750 mg.
Aleve OTC is available in tablet, gelcap, caplet or liquid gel. But other formulas are available in delayed release tablets, extended release tablets, capsules and oral suspension.
For Aleve OTC, take one 220 mg pill every 8 to 12 hours. For the first dose, patients can take 2 pills within the first hour. Dont take more than 2 pills in 12 hours, and do not take more than 3 pills in 24 hours.
Dont take Aleve for more than 10 consecutive days unless your doctor tells you to. The maximum daily dose for naproxen is 660 mg.
Which Is More Effective At Relieving Pain
Since naproxen and ibuprofen work in the same way, they are generally equally effective for relieving pain. However, the type of pain youre experiencing may help you decide which to take.
On average, Aleve lasts eight to twelve hours, while Advil lasts just four to six hours. That means that if you have chronic, long-lasting pain, Aleve is probably a more effective option for you. Advil is better for short-term pain, and its also considered safer for children.
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Rated For Migraine Report
this is the only thing that helps my migraines so itâs great for that but luckily i donât get migraines all the time because aleve does have side effects. this time i had to have the max 24 dosage of 12 hour aleve. i had never taken 3 pills in 24 hours before. ugh. GI symptoms! all of them. itâs like the GI symptom buffet. the migraine is gone thank god but i canât go back to normal activity yet until my gut calms down. first constipation and then sporadic diarrhea plus bloating and a bit of stomach pain. but way better than a migraine. i discovered aleve after i sprained my ankle 12 years ago and it took down the pain and swelling like magic! i had thought my weekend was ruined but it wasnât. so then i tried it for migraines. i donât know if the more times you take it the more side effects you have because that first time i had no side effects.
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Picking The Right Nsaid For Your Arthritis Pain
When your muscles ache or your joints throb, you and your doctor may turn to one of the most commonly-used medications to ease the pain: a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug , either over-the-counter or prescription. But not all NSAIDs are the same, so how do you pick the right one? Consider these factors.
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Are Aleve And Ibuprofen The Same Thing
Naproxen and ibuprofen are both non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and they work in the same way by blocking COX-2 enzymes and COX-1 enzymes. However, they have different onset times and durations. Naproxen is a long-acting drug, meaning it takes longer to start relieving your pain, but it lasts longer too. Ibuprofen is short-acting, so it starts working more quickly but needs to be taken more frequently.
Are There Specific Warnings Associated With Nsaid Use
The Food and Drug Administration requires that the labeling of NSAIDs contain these specific warnings:
These warnings are for non-aspirin NSAIDs:
- Non-aspirin NSAIDs can increase the chance of heart attack or stroke. This risk may be greater if you have heart disease or risk factors for heart disease. However, the risk may also be increased in people who do not have heart disease or those risk factors. This risk can occur early in treatment and may increase with longer use.
- Heart problems caused by non-aspirin NSAIDs can happen within the first weeks of use and may happen more frequently with higher doses or with long-term use.
- Non-aspirin NSAIDs should not be used right before or after heart bypass surgery.
This warning is for all NSAIDs including aspirin:
NSAIDs may increase the chance of serious stomach and bowel side effects like ulcers and bleeding. These side effects can occur without warning signs. This risk may be greater in people who:
- Are on multiple prescription or over-the-counter NSAIDs.
- Drink three or more alcoholic beverages per day.
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How Much Should You Worry About The Heart Risk Of Nsaids
NSAIDs present a small additional heart risk, but keep it in perspective. There are even more important risks that you might need to address, including smoking, being overweight, eating an unhealthy diet, and not exercising enough. There are a lot of things that cause heart disease that people need to worry about more than NSAIDs.