What Kind Of Herbal Supplements Can I Take As Substitutes For Pain Medication?

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Question: Hi. My name is Kelly Stanton. I'm 39 years old and I have fibromyalgia. I take a lot of pain medication, and I'd like to ask: What kind of herbal supplements I can take so I can stop taking the pain medication?

Answer: Kelly, that is a fantastic question. I hear where you're coming from. You have fibromyalgia, you hurt, you've been taking medicines for many years -- they're not helping you. You want to stop them all, try something different, try an herb, try a supplement. Keep in mind, don't do anything before talking to your doctor. Don't stop your medications without speaking to someone first, because they may have really bad side effects when you stop them abruptly. That being said, I commend you for trying to stop these pain medications and try something different.

When we talk about fibromyalgia, you may have not heard, there's a new medicine called Lyrica that was approved by the FDA for the treatment of fibromyalgia. It's a medicine that decreases the hypersensitivity of the nerves in your body and in your brain. Ask your doctor about it.

Herbs, supplements, we've used them in medicine. We call it alternative therapy. Just because it's an alternative thing to what we know about, doesn't mean they don't work. St. John's Wort, echinacea, garlic, valerian root -- can help you, can help people with fibromyalgia. Keep in mind that these things are unregulated by the FDA. They all have real effects on you; they can have physiological effects on your blood pressure, on other things. Just make sure your doctor knows that you're trying them, or you're taking them. Just because you can buy it at the local store without a prescription, doesn't mean it doesn't have real effects.

I commend you, and I hope you do better.

Next: Can I Learn To Cope With Headaches And Nausea?

Previous: Is It Better To Take Over-The-Counter Drugs, Or Prescriptions With Side Effects?

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