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Who Should Not Take NSAIDs? NSAIDs help ease everyday aches and pains, but do you know how you should take them? Never use an over-the-counter NSAID for more than 10 days without checking with your doctor. Over-the-counter NSAIDs are effective pain relievers, but they are intended for short-term use.
When taking NSAIDs for long periods of time, your doctor should closely follow how you’re doing so she can watch for side effects and change your treatment if needed. All prescription NSAIDs have a warning that the medications may increase the chance of having a heart attack, stroke, and stomach bleeding. They all reduce pain and inflammation, but you might find that you get more relief from one NSAID over another, and some NSAIDs may have fewer side effects than others. The effect differs from person to person. Some NSAIDs also may be more convenient, since you only need to take them once or twice a day. NSAIDs are safest when you take them in low doses for brief periods. Some side effects are mild and go away on their own or after reducing the dose.
Others may be more serious and need medical attention. Your doctor might tell you to stop taking NSAIDs before surgery. NSAIDs without checking with your doctor. Other side effects are less common. There is no way to avoid the side effects of any drug. But you and your doctor can lower your risk of having side effects from NSAIDs.
NSAIDs for pain relief that your doctor doesn’t feel requires an anti-inflammatory drug. Take the smallest dose of NSAIDs that you need. If you don’t need 24-hour a day relief, avoid one-dose-a-day types of NSAIDs, especially if you are over age 60. These medications stay in your body longer and may cause more side effects. Some medications combine an NSAID and an acid blocker in one pill. If you have lasting or unusual pain in your stomach after starting an NSAID, tell your doctor right away. Doctors prescribe NSAIDs in different doses depending on your condition.
Dosages may range from one to four times per day, depending on how long each drug stays in your body. No single NSAID is guaranteed to work. Your doctor may prescribe several types of NSAIDs before finding one that works best for you. You have a higher risk of stomach bleeding. Osteoarthritis: Do You Need a Doctor?