You don’t have to be taking opioids to have a problem with painkillers. Heck, those of us with chronic pain can confirm that you don’t even need a prescription to be “hooked” on pain relievers.
Millions of Americans regularly put their health on the line for some desperately needed pain relief. And what’s worse is most of them don’t even know it.
A stunning new survey on Americans reveals just how bad the over-the-counter (OTC) painkillers problem actually is. And frankly, it’s disturbing.
In fact, the numbers you’re about to see are so high that I think it’s safe to say you absolutely know someone who’s unwittingly facing these issues. You might even be one of those folks yourself.
But I’m not just going to share with you how big the problem with OTC painkillers is today. I’ve also got a better and safer way to ease some of the most common forms of pain you may face. No drugs needed.
The TRUE toll of store-bought painkillers
The new survey finds a staggering number of American adults have fallen for one of the biggest myths in modern medicine.
The notion that drugs sold over-the-counter are somehow far safer than prescription meds. And that you don’t have to worry too much about them, as long as you follow the instructions.
But as you’ll see in a moment, that’s NOT the case when it comes to painkillers. You could read the label carefully, follow the instructions perfectly, never take more than the “maximum” amount, and still end up in trouble.
In fact, you could be unwittingly setting yourself up for dangerous and even deadly problems down the road. Because most people don’t realize that over-the-counter painkillers can even pose such a threat. That’s why places like Costco and Sam’s continue to sell supersized containers of these pills.
The new survey finds that one in three Americans take over-the-counter painkillers EVERY day. Plus, 12 percent of Americans take them SEVERAL times each day.
Even worse, many not only use painkillers to fight pain but also to avoid it. In other words, they take them even when nothing hurts, hoping to keep it that way.
And that’s the wrong approach. Because over-the-counter painkillers are linked to everything from hearing loss to hypertension.
And one of the most popular categories of OTC drugs could even wreak your heart. You can catch up on this frightening side effect in my earlier report, Deadly heart risk soars 42% with this OTC painkiller.
Fact check for TRUE pain relief
Here’s the truth. There are elements to your day that are entirely within your control that can make your pain better or worse. And the new survey even spots some of them.
For example, 36 percent say poor sleep makes their pain worse. Fact check: TRUE!
If you’re having trouble sleeping, consider sipping on an herbal tea such as chamomile. Or try melatonin to get your sleep cycle back on track.
Good rest is vital because it allows your body to carry out critical repairs that can help ease inflammation and pain. Poor rest cuts that repair process short and leaves you more sensitive to pain. And that can cause you to reach for the painkillers even more often.
Another 35 percent say being sedentary leads to more pain. Fact check: TRUE!
Your instinct may be to baby what hurts and barely move it until you feel better. Many folks with backaches choose to stay in bed, for example. And those of us nursing knee pain often avoid walking.
But in reality, being sedentary can actually make the pain far worse in the long run. So once you have your doc’s blessing go ahead and force yourself to get up and gently move around for a bit each day.
Thirty percent say exercise makes them feel better. Fact check: TRUE!
Just like being sedentary can make things hurt more, moving makes them hurt less. But beyond that, exercise will also strengthen muscles, leading to less soreness and misery. And that can lead to you taking fewer painkillers.
If you’re not feeling up to “workout,” even just basic stretching exercises two or three times a day can lead to significantly less pain.
Don’t stop there, of course. Depending on the types of aches and pains you’re battling, there might be specific natural painkillers that could help.
For example, knee pain often responds well to Type-II cartilage and turmeric. And topical creams or gels with MSM, capsaicin, menthol, and other proven ingredients for on-the-spot relief often work well for back pain and other muscle aches.
You don’t need to choose between living in pain and taking risky over-the-counter painkillers. A naturopathic or integrative medicine doctor can help tailor a natural pain-relief plan specifically for you.