Treatment of Back Pain

Is Aspirin The Right Solution For Back Pain?

Amidst various other OTC medications used to treat back pain, Aspirin is the most common. But, is this medicine really a good enough solution to the problem? Let us find out by understanding how aspirin works and affects your body.

What is Aspirin?
Aspirin is an over the counter anti inflammatory drug that is used to relieve pain and inflammation. This medication is classified as an analgesic and falls under the category of NSAIDs (Non Steroidal Anti Inflammatory Drugs).

It is one of the oldest medications in use. The medicine was developed in 1800 by the Bayer Company. Of late, aspirin is also being used as a therapy to prevent cardiovascular diseases.

How does it treat back pain?
Aspirin helps treat back pain by blocking a chemical inside the body known as prostaglandins. This chemical is produced wherever there is inflammation. It also sends out pain signals which make you experience pain. By blocking these chemicals, aspirin prevents the inflammation and the pain they would have otherwise caused.

Should I use aspirin for back pain?
While aspirin is effective in treating back pain, it is not really advised as an effective treatment to the problem. The reason for the same being the numerous side effects this medication brings along. When you consume this medication, it affects the whole body. Aspirin does not have a target location. So, as a result even the body parts that are not in pain tend to get affected by this medication.

Further on, prostaglandins may cause inflammation but they are also responsible to maintain the lining of the stomach. In addition, they also prevent clotting of the blood. Thus, complete blocking of prostaglandins is not a good thing for the body. Instead, blocking this chemical could result in to side effects in the GI tract such as ulcers or irritation.

Some people may also develop allergies on using Aspirin. Facial swelling, wheezing, hives are some of the commonly caused allergic reactions on using this medication.

How to use?
Considering that there are numerous side effects of using aspirin for back pain, it is always best to speak to your doctor before you use the medicine. If you do not feel the need to consult a doctor, make sure that you take the medication as per the instructions given on the box.

Aspirin is available in different forms such as plain aspirin, enteric-coated, extended release, buffered or chewable. Out of all the forms mentioned above, the enteric coated one is the best option as it minimizes the side effects caused to the GI tract. If you take extended release or enteric-coated tablets, take them whole- do not crush or chew.