Cut Down On Pain Killers

By Daily Guide

PEOPLE WHO resort to the use of analgesics (pain-relieving tablets) at the instance of mild bodily pains, headaches and other bodily discomforts are reportedly doing more harm than good to themselves.

Doctors say having a mild headache does not necessarily mean one should run to any nearby pharmacy shop for pain-relieving drugs.

It has been observed that the several reported cases of kidney and liver failures are partially due to the continuous use of analgesics.

“It is sad to know that thousands of Ghanaians today are overusing pain-relieving tablets with the view to minimising their pain but are unaware of the consequences of such actions,” Dr. Patrick Frimpong, Medical Director in-charge of the La General Hospital told HEALTH MATTERS in Accra last Wednesday.

He mentioned the popular Paracetamol and Aspirin tablets as not always too good for the relief of pains.

He said the continuous use of these analgesics does not only go to affect the kidney and the liver but creates other health-related problems such as ulcers and other Gastro-intestinal conditions that lead to irreparable damage to the human system and eventually death.

He, therefore, cautioned people who regularly experience pains in certain vital areas of the body to adopt safer means to do away with the aches rather than depending solely on pain-relieving tablets for relief.

“Pharmacists and licensed chemical sellers should assist policymakers in the fight against self-medication by educating their customers about the appropriate time to use or not to use a particular drug.”

According to Dr. Frimpong the body's system gradually develops resistance to analgesics which eventually goes to create a situation where the efficacy of these drugs is no longer felt by the individual.

Dr. Frimpong who expressed grave concern about the devastating effects of the constant use of such drugs made it clear that “a mild headache, for instance, can easily be treated effectively by simply sipping two or three glasses full of potable water.

“The individual using this simple approach should take at least 15 to 30 minutes rest whilst sipping the water and he or she will not regret it.”

The medical doctor pointed out that greater percentage of reported ailments at various hospitals could have largely been prevented, had caution been taken against poor lifestyle by many Ghanaians.

When asked what then should be done to reduce the incidence of diseases, Dr. Frimpong said, “People must begin to adopt preventive healthcare instead of curative approach.

“I think it is about time Ghanaians adhered strictly to the recommended 8 glasses of potable water a day; ate more plant-based foods like fresh fruits and vegetables; exercised frequently; had enough rest and went for regular medical check-ups to stay healthy at all times.”

He called on Ghanaians to include these in their respective New Year resolutions for a transformed and fruitful society for all.

By Grace Eyram Dartey