Are you tak­ing too many painkiller­s?

THE AV­ER­AGE UK ADULT POPS MORE THAN 300 PILLS A YEAR. MICHELLE O’CON­NOR RE­PORTS ON HOW RE­LY­ING ON OVER-THE-COUNTER MEDICINE COULD LEAD TO SE­RI­OUS PROB­LEMS

Llanelli Star - - HEALTH & LIFESTYLE -

DO YOU pop a painkiller ev­ery time you have a headache? You’re not alone.

In the UK, the av­er­age adult takes 373 painkiller­s each year, ac­cord­ing to a re­port by the Bri­tish Med­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion, with one in 20 tak­ing at least six painkiller­s ev­ery time they feel ill.

How­ever, this reliance on over-the-counter tablets can have se­ri­ous reper­cus­sions.

TV pre­sen­ter Judy Fin­ni­gan, 70, re­vealed re­cently she needed two life­sav­ing blood trans­fu­sions when she de­vel­oped stom­ach ul­cers af­ter tak­ing ibupro­fen “like sweet­ies” to help with a pain­ful knee in­jury.

Stu­art Gale, chief phar­ma­cist at ox­for­don­linephar­macy.co.uk, ex­plains ev­ery­thing you need to know about the four main painkiller­s you can buy over the counter with­out a pre­scrip­tion.

Don’t take painkiller­s along with other medicines, such as com­bi­na­tion cold and flu medicines, which can con­tain the same drugs. And don’t take ibupro­fen with non-steroidal an­ti­in­flam­ma­tory drug (NSAID) creams and gels.

Reach­ing for the painkiller­s ev­ery time you have a headache is prob­a­bly not the best idea

Judy Fin­ni­gan

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