At What Point Do You Take Painkillers.

shandy4greenday Member Posts: 344
edited 3. Jul 2013, 10:13 in Living with Arthritis archive
I just wondered at what point everyone takes extra pain killers on top of their usual medication.I try to avoid taking them and only take them as a last resort as I don't like taking them, I feel I have enough tablets to be taking so therefore try to avoid taking them. I do get pains but try to cope with them first, I am using Co-Codamol but I find they just make me so spaced out even with having the dosage lowered to 15mg therefore will be unable to do usual things so I will only take in the evenings. Do you think I should be taking them to help once the pains start or just wait to see if the pains ease off which is what I normally will try to do.What does everyone else do to cope with their pains.I have just got over a flare up for the last week and have been trying not to use them and wondered if I should be taking them more or not.


  • lizzieuk1
    lizzieuk1 Member Posts: 302
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hmm that's tricky recently with the sort of constant flare I've been having I take the 30/500 cocodamol before bed and first thing so I can sleep and get going when my toddler wakes up, I've tried to only take my paracetamol in the day as the coco plays havoc with my digestion, I do take naproxen 2-3 x daily though or things get a bit too much.
    So I guess in answer its naproxen regularly to try and keep pain at reasonable level then cocos either side for a top up at my worst times.
  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 27,846
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00

    If I am in pain take my anti-inflams and pain killers. I was taught to get 'ahead' of chronic pain rather than let it get ahead of me.

    I cautiously reduce meds when things are easing


    Toni xxxx
  • applerose
    applerose Member Posts: 3,621
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I'm not on any other meds but take paracetamol when I feel I need them. I'm like you, I don't like taking them and try to put up with the pain. A few months ago, I did get a really bad flare-up and took cocodamol for 3 days. My rheumie did suggest taking paracetamol every day to build it up but I feel that I won't notice other pains such as toothache.
  • woodbon
    woodbon Member Posts: 4,969
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I take tramadol as my main pain killer and if I have paracetamol if the pain starts to get worse. I can't take anti inflamitories as I've had an duodenal ulcer. Well, to be really honest, I do take the odd ibroprophen as they work better, but I have to feel really bad to do this and always make sure I've eaten first. I wouldn't reccommend anyone to do this without GPs knowledge and permission, as its a gamble, but my GP knows and says if its only very occasionally, I'll be OK.
    Love Sue
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 26,930
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    It's an individual thing. I take as few as possible but there are times when 'as few as possible' is more than usual. Like frog, I then aim to cut back asap.
  • DebbieT
    DebbieT Member Posts: 1,033
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00

    I have Fibromyalgia, PsA & OA. My daily pain killers are 2 x 150mg Tramadol SR, 3 x 1000mg paracetamol & 3 x 400 mg ibuprofen. I then take up to 100mg normal tramadol, 1000mg paracetamol & 400mg ibuprofen if I'm in a flare. I also take something for complex migraines but thats under review.

    I switched from coco's to tramadol sr as coco's just spaced me out & didn't actually help with the pain. The coping skills course I did taught the same philosophy as Frogmorton mentioned for chronic pain.

    Btw I have no trouble feeling pain still so I don't think it would stop you feeling toothache. Maybe worth discussing with ure Dr tho.x
  • bubbadog
    bubbadog Member Posts: 5,544
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I take oro-morph when the pain goes past my tolerance line which is mainly when I have a flare up or I have a little accident! (legs give way ect!)
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Two cocos in the morning, two at night, more as a top-up if required and, if things get really rough then the big guns of tramadol. I keep those to the minimum though as I like having somewhere to turn for the rougher patches. I keep it all to the minimum as the pain is constant, won't be sudbued even if I am blissed out on little pink clouds so why try? It's a useful feedback too, if I happen to overdoing things at least I can tell. :)

    I think that what I do is of little relevance, you have to find what suits you best and that can take some time to establish. We all have different levels of tolerance - one person's mild ache is another's searing agony. DD
  • hileena111
    hileena111 Member Posts: 7,099
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I don't like taking them either but I was told to "keep on top of the pain" "don't play catch up" "Once you open that pain door its a lot harder to close it again"
    I'm on paracetamol and naproxen....{apart from lansoprozol and anti convulsants etc...nothing to do with pain} I have codeine to take when I really need it.

  • shandy4greenday
    shandy4greenday Member Posts: 344
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I've been on Naproxen since October daily and find it helps but sometimes when you get the flare ups it is not always enough. I have been given Co-Codamol but try not to use it because I do get a few stomach cramps with it too. I did ask my doc for something else but all he did was give me the lower dosage which sometimes I feel takes longer to kick in.I now get cramp in my right leg everyday but I find my Deep Heat helps that but most things I have I can't really use during the day as I need to be resting to get the benefit and Paracetemol is useless for me.I will maybe go back to GP to see what else I could use during daytime.I dont really want to put up with the pains anymore when I could have something that helps.
  • barbara12
    barbara12 Member Posts: 21,274
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I have just stopped taking my antiinflams and boy do I know about it, but they aren't good on my kidneys...I have never been good at taking meds but you learn there is no way round it...must say I do differ from day to day...maybe thats why I am not on top of it...xx
  • Starburst
    Starburst Member Posts: 2,546
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    hileena111 wrote:
    I don't like taking them either but I was told to "keep on top of the pain" "don't play catch up" "Once you open that pain door its a lot harder to close it again"
    I'm on paracetamol and naproxen....{apart from lansoprozol and anti convulsants etc...nothing to do with pain} I have codeine to take when I really need it.


    I was told to keep on top of the pain too. My pain specialist told me that taking paracetamol regularly would give me better relief than popping co-cos when the pain gets really bad. I have constant foot and ankle pain, so I usually start the day with 2 co-cos and top up with paracetamol for the rest of the day, maybe another couple of co-cos before bed. When I'm in a flare, I take about 6 co-cos per day. Things are pretty crummy right now, so I'm on 6-8 co-co per day plus tramadol at night.
  • snowdrop123
    snowdrop123 Member Posts: 41
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi there,

    I take paracetamol (the max dose everyday), diclofenac sodium (50mg three times per day) and amitriptyline 20mg (a low dose, at bed time to help me sleep). I can't take coco or tramadol because they make me feel really rough. I find that if I don't take the painkillers until I'm in a lot of pain (as opposed to the usual chronic pain) I can't keep on top of it and I get really low and depressed. I feel way more in control of my situation if I take the meds at the same time everyday and I don't wait until I can't move at all. I was (like some others have said) told at a condition management course that it's better for you to not let the pain get too much before you take the painkillers because it's far harder to get the pain back to a tolerable point again than if you take the painkillers at regular intervals throughout the day. In my experience they were right. I was so shocked when the GP told me, several years ago that I would probably have to take painkillers everyday for the rest of my life. I cannot move at all if I don't take them so even if they are going to cause me other health problems, in the future. it's a gamble I'm prepared to take. I hope that you have a good GP who will help you to find the best combination of meds for you.
    Good luck and best wishes
  • maria09
    maria09 Member Posts: 1,905
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    It's true the medical profession do say keep topped up as its easier to control the pain rather than wait until the pain is bad as it takes longer to control its a fact as there are many research articles about it
    I was a medical professional till I had to take ill health retirement and do I practice what I preach well no
    I tend to take my tramadol SR twice a day and only paracetamol and my extra tramadol when pains really bad as I don't want to feel spaced out all day
    I think it's trying to find the happy balance of pain not too bad so I can function as normally as I can than have no pain and not be able to function
    It's also a case of I hate taking tablets but have no choice
    Yes take note of what they say but at the end of the day they don't have our conditions or our pain only we can decide
    My what a ramble and I've only had my usual meds
    Hope I've not confused you

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