As I opened my bottle of over the counter pain reliever this morning,
I noticed that I am almost out. Again.
This past week I have been having more muscle pain and stiffness than
usual...a flare-up of a condition that has been dragging at me for the
past 4 months.
As I shook out 2 round blue tablets, I sighed. "Louise," I told myself,
"it's because you have been having to take 2 doses of 2 pills now every
day, just to keep moving. You're going to go through it faster."
The 2 round blue tablets I take every day is also my top recommendation
for when customers ask me what is best for muscle aches and
inflammation. The good news is that this potent anti-inflammatory drug
is available without a prescription, and is inexpensive.
Because this medicine is a powerful pain reliever. I recommend it for
dental pain, pain from menstrual cramps, and general muscle swelling and
But there is a catch.
The medication I take every morning and evening for my ongoing muscle
swelling, pain and stiffness is naproxen. You may have heard it
advertised by one of its brand names, Aleve®. Two tablets of 220mg each
give you a dose of 440mg, twice a day. That is nearly up to the strength
of the prescription version of 500mg.
This is one POWERFUL analgesic.
Whenever a new anti-inflammatory and pain reliever is being developed,
it is compared to a standard. There is one drug in the pain and
inflammation drug group that stands out, and is used as a benchmark for
the other ones. This is considered "the gold standard" of effectiveness
Do you know what the "gold standard" for prescription drugs marketed for
pain and inflammation is?
Naproxen at a dose of 500mg twice a day is the benchmark by which all of
other similar drugs are measured against. Non-prescription Aleve® or
naproxen, which is 220mg in each tablet or caplet, when taken at the
full adult dose of two tablets every 12 hours, is nearly equivalent.
But like with so many medicines, this drug can also be dangerous. It and
its close cousins are responsible for thousands of hospitalizations and
There is more information about naproxen and tips on how to take medicines
safely at www.askdrlouise.com/blog.
© 2011 Louise Achey Helping You Take Medicine Safely™