“You’ll have to give your painkillers up,” is the usual advice as well as a precondition we start our treatment with. No matter how chronic or complicated the case. And the reactions we get are no less stereotypical… “But doctor! I have been dependent on these drugs so badly and for so long now?” “Do you expect me to discontinue altogether?” “You don’t know how severe my pains are!” “Will I have to stop them immediately?” “Why can’t we take Homoeopathic (Homeopathic) medicines and painkillers side by side?” So on and so forth. And the next few minutes are invariably spent on explaining why not.
‘Pain is an unpleasant sensation localized to a part of body. It is often described in terms of a penetrating or tissue-destructive process (e.g. stabbing, burning, twisting, tearing, squeezing) and / or of a bodily or emotional reaction (e.g. terrifying, nauseating, sickening etc.) pain is universally understood as a signal of disease, it is the most common symptom that brings the patient to a physician’s attention. The function of the pain sensory system is to detect, localize and identify tissue-damaging processes. Since different diseases produce characteristic patterns of tissue damage, the quality, time, course, and location of a patient’s pain complaint and the location of tenderness provide important diagnostic clues and are used to evaluate the response to treatment. Further more any pain of moderate or higher intensity is accompanied by anxiety and the urge to escape or terminate the feeling; these properties illustrate the duality of pain: it is both sensation and emotion. When acute, pain is characteristically associated with behavioral arousal and a stress response, consisting of increased blood pressure, heart rate, pupil diameter, and plasma cortisol levels. In addition local muscle contraction (for example limb flexion, abdominal wall rigidity) is often present.’
Problem is that most of us treat pain as a disease in it self, while, at best, it can merely be an indication of one. Hence, we confuse the picture and symptoms to the extent we kill or suppress the pain, and make it difficult for the homoeopath to make a correct diagnosis. To a homoeopath all these various peculiarities of pain sensations like cutting, stabbing, throbbing etc. are vital clues to select the right medicine. And pain killers mutilate the original pain-sensation beyond recognition and precise selection without pure untarnished symptoms becomes difficult.
NSAIDs ‘Aspirin and other common pain relievers are terrific medicines that help people manage all kinds of pain from headaches to sore toes. Known collectively as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), they are available over the counter. As the name indicates, NSAIDs reduce inflammation and pain, and most NSAIDs also reduce body temperature during a fever.’
Side effects: ‘Effective as they are, you should think twice about taking them for muscle soreness. It appears that NSAIDs can limit the capacity of muscle damage and other injuries and if NSAIDs inhibit recovery, they also inhibit muscle growth. Long term use, especially at high dose levels, is more likely to cause gastric bleeding (even ulcers), water retention, alterations of liver function, altered blood clotting and more. These effects can go unnoticed for long periods, if not indefinitely, in some individuals but that doesn’t mean that the effects are not occurring and adversely influencing growth and recovery. Writing in the British Medical Journal, the researchers, led by Dr Gunnar Lauge Nielsen, of the Odder Hospital, say: “Use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in pregnancy is clearly associated with increased risk of miscarriage. Selling paracetamol and other painkillers in smaller pack sizes has slashed rates of suicide and damage to the liver from paracetamol poisoning”, accords to the British Medical Journal. ‘The ideal treatment for any pain is to remove the cause. Further more some conditions are so painful that rapid and effective analgesia or pain relief is essential for example post operative pain, burns, trauma…’
Cause is not always where the effect is, for example if you feel pain in your spine due to osteoporosis or degeneration, the cause might lie in your calcium deficient diet, or your poor digestion & assimilation of calcium, hormone imbalance, or in your bulky abdomen which might reflect your sedentary lifestyle, or your stressful job which makes you sit in a perpetually wrong posture; pain is merely the message a distress call from a suffering organ to the brain that all is not well with it and immediate attention/help, or rest is required; by popping a painkiller you disconnect all links between the organ and the brain. Thus a spinal disc, a knee which was crying “give me some rest, kindly help I am getting damaged!” is literally told to shut up and carry on with its routine work till the damage is done and surgery becomes almost imminent. Homoeopathy (Homeopathy), instead of sedating the brain and blinding it to the trouble tries to make it even more alert and aware of it by intensifying the same briefly, which creates the semblance of a bigger disease, provoking our defense system to act and usher in the curative process, that eliminates the cause, if internal, and gives a lasting relief from pain.
Written by- Dr. Shikhar Kaushal, Founder Director Panacea Homoeopathic (Homeopathic) Clinic Pvt. Ltd., & Dr. Shubhangi Kaushal, Director, Panacea Homoeopathic (Homeopathic) Clinic Pvt. Ltd.