8 Nasty Side Effects of Over-the-Counter and Prescription Painkillers Men Need to Know

Millions of men take painkillers for their chronic back, knee, hip and other types of pain, often believing them to be the only option for relief.

But this pain solution comes at a steep price, as side effects are more the rule than the exception when it comes to taking these powerful drugs.

Among men, in particular, painkillers can pose unique risks that many men are unaware of.

If you’re taking prescription opioids (morphine, codeine, etc.), nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs, such as Celebrex), or even over-the-counter products like Tylenol, there are some very important painkiller side effects you should watch out for…

READ MORE: The All-Natural (And Far More Effective) Alternative to Painkillers

8 Painkiller Side Effects Every Man Should Know

8. Erectile Dysfunction

Men who take prescription opioid painkillers are 50 percent more likely to suffer from erectile dysfunction than those who do not, and the risk is the highest for men who take such medications for an extended period of time.[i]

7. Low Testosterone Levels

Men who take long-acting opioids, which are designed to release the pain medication slowly and are taken every eight to 12 hours, are five times more likely to have low testosterone levels than men taking short-acting opioids.[ii] Low testosterone levels in men are linked to diminished quality of life as well as decreases in muscle mass, bone density, cognitive abilities, mood and libido.

6. Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea, a disorder that’s already more common in men than in women, is further increased among people who take opioid pain medications. An alarming 75 percent of chronic pain patients taking such drugs suffered from sleep apnea in one study, compared to a rate in the general population of well under 5 percent.[iii]

5. Liver Failure

If you take too much acetaminophen (Tylenol) — which is extremely easy to do if you take multiple over-the-counter medications, for instance one for pain relief and one to relieve cough/cold or fever symptoms (even some sleep aids contain acetaminophen), or if you take an extra dose in a 24-hour period – you could suffer from fatal liver damage.

Sandra Kweder, M.D., deputy director of FDA’s Office of New Drugs, said:[iv]

“Overdoses from prescription products containing acetaminophen account for nearly half of all cases of acetaminophen-related liver failure in the U.S., many of which result in liver transplant or death … The risk of liver injury primarily occurs when patients take multiple products containing acetaminophen at one time and exceed the current maximum dose of 4,000 milligrams within a 24-hour period.”

4. Gastrointestinal Bleeding

NSAIDs, including even over-the-counter options like aspirin, are notorious for being hard on your gastrointestinal tract, leading to potentially fatal side effects such as bleeding in your digestive tract, ulcers and perforation of your stomach or intestines.

3. Heart Risks

All prescription NSAIDs, including Celebrex, ibuprofen and naproxen, can increase your risk of a deadly heart attack or stroke.

Celebrex, in particular, has been found to pose unacceptably high heart attack risks. Researchers noted “an increase in risk by a factor of two or three” for myocardial infarction, stroke, congestive heart failure, or cardiovascular-related death among people taking Celebrex, compared to placebo.[v]

2. Addiction

Opioid painkillers stimulate pleasure-perceiving areas in your brain, leading to an initial rush of euphoria that some people find impossible to resist.

Soon larger doses are needed to feel the rush again, and continued doses are needed to stave off the inevitable withdrawal symptoms that creep in when the drug is no longer taken.

Along with developing physical dependence on the drugs, some people also become quickly addicted.

1. Death from Overdosing

More men die from drug overdoses than women, and three out of four prescription drug overdoses are caused by prescription painkillers.

Prescription drug overdoses now cause more overdose deaths than cocaine and heroin combined,[vi] and their numbers are on the rise.

It only takes one larger doses of prescription painkillers to slow down breathing to the point that it stops altogether, resulting in a fatal overdose.

Stop: There is a Better Way to Relieve Your Pain

If you could get fast-acting, long-term pain relief without any of the potentially deadly side effects that pain meds cause, would you switch?

The question is, more aptly, why wouldn’t you?

A natural anti-inflammatory exists, and its safer and more effective than the painkillers we’ve mentioned so far.

I’m talking about proteolytic enzymes. Unlike traditional pain medications that simply cover up your pain like a Band-Aid… these natural enzymes actually HEAL the underlying condition causing your pain.

That means you’ll feel quick pain relief in the short-term… and permanent healing in the long-term, without the side effects common to prescription opioids and NSAIDs.

Discover how these enzymes can end pain, stop disease, extend your life — and even kill viruses — in our special report The Enzyme Secret. 

Download your FREE copy by clicking the image below.

Filed Under: Medications
Written By:  Updated:
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Jesse Cannone, CFT, CPRS, MFT

Jesse is the co-founder and visionary CEO of The Healthy Back Institute®, the world-leading source of natural back pain solutions. His mission as a former back pain sufferer is to help others live pain free without surgery and pharmaceuticals.

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4 thoughts on “8 Nasty Side Effects of Over-the-Counter and Prescription Painkillers Men Need to Know”

  1. ben littlewood says:

    I would love to take advantage of your current special offer made to me via email, but as I live in the UK postage cost’s are prohibitive.
    do you have any outlets in the UK at all ? which would enable me to purchase ?
    Thank you, Ben.

  2. Steve says:

    No we do not have any outlets in the UK, we are Internet based but we ship all over the world, were we are able to..

    Steve HBI Staff

  3. Carol says:

    I have had back surgeries and was left with a lot of nerve pain, would heal n soothe help?

    1. STEVEN says:

      Carol, The enzymes can help with post-surgery scar tissue, help support healthy blood flow, and in time as your function improves, the way you feel will improve.

      Steve HBI-Staff

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