And there I was, lying whole day on my bed. It’s too painful I can’t even move. The more I try to ignore the pain, the more I can feel it. Why do us girls have to experience this pain every month? I have high tolerance to pain, but this one is an exemption. It is not a new thing to me since I first had my red days. As young as 10, I started to have this regular visitor pains and the only ones that can comfort me in those times are those little pills I consider my only true friends, the painkillers.
I remember how each days of the month bring different pains in my body. I experienced headache, abdominal cramps, tiredness, backaches and more. It caused me to miss school and the fun with my friends. Up until I worked in the corporate world, it was still there. So painkillers, particularly Ibuprofen became my best friend on hand. I have to take it more than once in a day for a long period of time to prevent the pain and to help me keep up to my day.
But one day, instead of finding relief after taking Ibuprofen, I found myself in the emergency room. My stomach ached so much that the doctor said its lining was damaged and the only culprit to see was Ibuprofen. It turned out that my prolonged use of this painkiller put my health on danger.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs), which includes ibuprofen, are painkilling drugs taken by most people everyday. As it is the most consumed over-the-counter painkilling ingredient , Ibuprofen is used by millions of people every day as a remedy for headache, to reduce fever symptoms, for bone and joint pains, muscle aches, PMS cramps and so on. It helps reduce pain and swelling throughout the body because it’s capable of lowering hormones that cause inflammation.
However, when it comes to taking any medication, one should take the smallest amount possible that will help relieve the pain. In other words, more isn’t always better, and taking high doses can cause side effects that are worse than the reason why you’re taking it in the first place. One of the biggest problems with taking very high dosages of Ibuprofen is that it’s capable of damaging parts of your digestive system, especially your stomach or intestines.
Watch out on this Ibuprofen overdose symptoms!
- an increased risk for heart attacks and stroke (which can be fatal)
- increased risk for seizures or a coma in the case of severe toxicity
- intestinal bleeding, especially in older adults
- dangerously low blood pressure levels (called hypotension)
- ringing in the ears
- blurred vision
- confusion, dizziness
- digestive and gastrointestinal problems, including diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, heartburn and stomach pain
- trouble urinating
- trouble breathing, shallow breath and wheezing
- skin rashes
My doctor said that Ibuprofen overdose happens when someone either takes too much at one time or the body doesn’t metabolize and eliminate the drug properly. In my case, it was my prolonged use that damaged my stomach lining. Since then I decided not to take these painkillers anymore. I did a research on natural alternatives that can relieve body pains.
Here’s what I got:
- Natural anti-inflammatory foods, herbs and supplements can help prevent and treat your symptoms. First and foremost, your diet plays a key role in the level of inflammation within your body, so a healing diet — one high in antioxidant-rich foods and low in packaged foods — is the first step in curbing symptoms.
- Simple adjustments to your posture, exercise routine, sleep schedule and lifestyle. For example, getting enough sleep can help with headaches and body aches; icing swollen joints or muscles can prevent swelling; exercising is great for reducing digestive issues and joint pains; and paying attention to your sitting and standing posture can do wonders for lower back, neck or hamstring pain
On top of those recommendations, here are several other supplements and superfoods that can naturally help lower inflammation, swelling and pain:
- Turmeric and ginger: Turmeric is one of the most powerful herbs in the world and contains the active ingredient called curcumin that acts similar to dozens of different medications. It’s useful for regulating cholesterol, arthritis symptoms, blood clotting, depression, cancer, digestive disorders like colitis, diabetes and chronic pains. Ginger is also used around the world to battle inflammation associated with arthritis and ulcerative colitis.
- Bromelain: An enzyme derived from pineapple, bromelain helps fight allergic reactions, indigestion, inflamed muscles and connective tissue, asthma, arthritis, and sinus infections.
- Magnesium: A crucial electrolyte that helps with nerve signaling and fluid balance, it’s great for relieving tension headaches, muscle spasms and indigestion.
- Essential oils: There are numerous essential oils that can help bring relief to swollen muscles or joints, fight colds and infections, reduce headache pain, and speed up wound healing. While their uses depend on what causes your pain in the first place, some popular anti-inflammatory essential oils include peppermint, lavender, eucalyptus and tea tree.
- Epsom salt baths: If you’re prone to having muscle or joint aches, salt baths help soothe muscle spasms and relax painful areas caused by inflammation. The salts are absorbed directly through the skin, penetrating areas that might be throbbing or swollen.
- SAMe: This molecule is what helps joints remain strong and pain-free, since it delivers sulfur to cartilage. It’s found in supplement form in products labeled “butanedisulfonate.”
I’m not saying ibuprofen’s bad… it’s still best to consult your doctor.
But you know what most doctors would recommend. 😉
About The Author
Charlotte has tried every buffet restaurant in the Metro and is on the quest to try the ones in the provinces soon. She's an active blogger and you can find her in her think tank in Marco Polo on weekdays. She used to think Oleia Topical Oil can help her loose weight since it's good for inflammation only to realize it's better for after work massages.