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Many of us take over-the-counter medication on a regular basis. Due in part to the fact that these medications are available without prescription and are taken so freely and frequently, it is not uncommon for their side effects to be ignored and/or indeed unknown to us. Unfortunately, this lack of knowledge can have serious consequences. For example, in a 2006 FDA report, approximately 46,000 emergency room visits/year were related to acetaminophen overdoses.
In a recent online article found on huffingtonpost.ca, some popular medications and their side effects are identified. If you have not already read it, you may wish to do so. As Stephanie Hallett, the article’s author states, “Potentially serious side effects for popular medications are more common than you may think.”
According to Carolyn Abraham:
What is clear is that North America’s baby boomers have found themselves in a perfect storm of self-destruction. For starters, boomers happened to reach the age of aches and pains just as highly addictive prescription opioid painkillers went mass market in the 1990s.
If you have not had the opportunity to read Abraham’s article entitled, “Against Opioid Abuse Among Baby Boomers,” click here to do so.
Did you know that…
- 17% to 31% of the general community report chronic pain.
- 50% of hospitalized patients report acute pain of moderate to severe intensity.
- People in pain miss work, spend time in hospital and visit the doctor often.
- Pain is almost unmentioned in medical training.
- Severe shortage of acute pain services and pain clinics in hospital settings.
- In-hospital patients with pain from non-surgical conditions are less likely to have their pain taken seriously enough to be treated.
- Outpatients who report pain of chronic duration to health care professionals are often dismissed, or are accused of malingering.
- There is a large gap between what is known and what is practiced in the treatment of all kinds of pain
- November 6th-12th is National Pain Awareness Week.
Click here to find out more.
When a person takes a painkiller, the assumption is that the pain will decrease in intensity. This is particularly true when the medicine taken is morphine. However, a recent study indicates that morphine may actually make chronic nerve pain worse. Why might this be the case? According to Dr. Peter Grace, an Australian neuroscientist at the University of Colorado and co-author of the study, “It seems morphine works quite well initially, but as the immune system ramps up, this starts to oppose the pain-relieving properties of morphine and morphine starts to induce pain in its own right.” Click here to read more.
Chronic pain is one of the most taxing health problems facing individuals. Although the pain can be problematic in and of itself, it can be accompanied by depression, loss of livelihood and independence and/or addiction to prescription pain killers.
Joan Broderick, senior behavioral scientist and associate director of the Center for Self-Report Science at USC Dornsife’s Center for Economic and Social Research (CESR), suggests an alternative to drug use. Click here to discover what it is.