Non Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDS)
Non - steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) are a common category of pain medication. This category includes medications containing aspirin, ibuprofen, diclofenac and naproxen. Popular brands of NSAIDs include Nurofen, Naprogesic, Disprin and Voltaren.
These medications work by altering the body's response to pain and swelling. As a result they are particularly effective in reducing muscle and joint pain. NSAIDs can also be effective in treating period pain and in a low dose aspirin may assist in reducing the risk of stroke or heart disease.
NSAIDs are generally safe when taken as directed for short periods. However, long term, repetitive use can cause damage to the stomach and liver. Patients also should be mindful that NSAIDs can also interact with other medications and alcohol. Some medications contain a combination of active ingredients and as such it is important to be aware of the differing components of the medications you are taking to avoid taking more than the recommended dose.
Always discuss all medications you are taking with your doctor, including over-the-counter products as well as complementary medicines, nutritional and herbal supplements.