Can Coffee Replace Paracetamol And Ibuprofen For Pain Relief?
The Law Of… managing chronic pain
A recent study into management of pain has revealed that coffee and long periods of sleep are better treatment than over-the-counter drugs.
Melanie Burden, a Personal Injury Solicitor at Simpson Millar, discusses the potential for coffee and sleep in managing pain, as well as considering a claim when suffering chronic pain following an injury.
The recent study, carried out by Boston Children’s hospital, used mice to explore the effects of coffee and long periods of sleep on the body’s ability to cope with pain. Scientists gave tired mice either painkillers, a boost of caffeine, or a prolonged sleep to test out their theory.
They found by giving mice caffeine or a long sleep, they were more resistant to pain in comparison to the mice that had been given painkillers.
Can Coffee Really Help With Pain Management?
The study suggests that a shot of caffeine increases the dopamine levels in the brain’s pleasure centre. This in turn relieved the mice of pain. Therefore, coffee before a potential bout of pain could alleviate some of the discomfort. However, drinking too much coffee is scientifically proven to increase fatigue and sometimes cause headaches. Experts suggest 3 cups of coffee a day is a safe amount to avoid any side effects. If you don’t like coffee, you can find over-the-counter painkillers that have caffeine within them.
What Else Can I Do To Manage Pain?
Interestingly, the study also suggested that a prolonged sleep can help sufferers with chronic pain. It also highlighted the fact that sleep-deprivation can often reduce the effectiveness of painkillers. You should be looking to get an average of 8 hours a night of quality sleep. However, if you suffer with chronic pain, a good night’s sleep is a real difficulty. Relaxation techniques can really help you drift off into a good night’s sleep and the NHS recommend reading a book or a warm bath before you attempt to sleep as this will help to relax your body.
What Outside Help Should I Be Seeking?
There are many other avenues sufferers of chronic pain can take. The NHS choices page offers lots of useful information, and advises:
- Acupuncture for chronic pain, especially for neck and back ache
- Physical Therapy for persistent pain that can be reduced by stretching exercises, manipulation and pain relief exercises.
- Physiotherapy, where you can be given advice on the right types of exercises and activities to pursue in order to aid your pain relief, and,
- Occupational therapy support to ensure the right environmental factors are in place to warrant a safe return to work
Can Compensation Help With Coping with Chronic Pain?
Chronic pain can be an extremely life debilitating condition as it is long term and can often affect sufferers mentally as well as physically. There are some more short term solutions such as Mindfulness to help with sleep deprivation, or painkillers to minimise the discomfort.
Longer term solutions for any form of chronic pain should involve experts in the field of pain management.
"Compensation can help to secure support and treatment and help to avoid long waiting lists in order to receive the most effective rehabilitation."
"Chronic pain following a personal injury can be extremely stressful and people often feel quite helpless as the very nature of chronic pain can feel quite isolating. Through effective treatment and support, sufferers of chronic pain can learn to manage their pain and live a more normal life."
"If you have suffered an injury because of a mistake of another, you could be eligible for compensation which will help go some way towards returning your life to normality. Our expert team of Personal Injury solicitors can provide you with the best advice on how to take your claim forward."