You've been taking your painkillers all wrong – simple trick makes them work faster | The Sun

IF you're in pain, then you might be rushing to find a pill to pop.

But experts have warned that the way you take painkillers could be having an impact on how fast your discomfort is banished.


Medics in the US said that the way you're positioned could be the difference between fast relief and slow burning pain.

Researchers at John Hopkins University found it's more effective to lie on your right side when medicating.

But, they added if you turn over, you could be waiting even longer for the pain to go away.

The gurus used a model called 'StomachSim' in an attempt to understand how posture can impact the absorption of drugs.

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While popping pills is a generally easy practise, they found it might not be the most effective way to consume pain relief – especially for patients who are old or bedridden.

How effective the drug is, depends on the ingredients and the stomach's environment once it reaches the gastrointestinal tract – which is where food and liquids travel through when they are being digested.

The medics looked at how well the active ingredients in painkillers pass through the pylorus and reach the duodenum – the first part of the small intestine.

The model was able to calculate how much was released and how effective each position was.

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Co-author Rajat Mittal of John Hopkins University explained: "Oral administration is surprisingly complex despite being the most common choice for drug administration.

"When the pill reaches the stomach, the motion of the stomach walls and the flow of contents inside determine the rate at which it dissolves.

"The properties of the pill and the stomach contents also play a major role.”

The authors explained that stomach contractions can induce pressure – making the pill move in the body.

Mittal added that these factors lead to different rates of how fast the pills are absorbed.

Writing in the journal Physics of Fluids, he added: "In this work, we demonstrate a novel computer simulation platform that offers the potential for overcoming these limitations.

"Our models can generate biorelevant data on drug dissolution that can provide useful and unique insights into the complex physiological processes behind the oral administration of pills.”

While taking painkillers if one way to relieve discomfort, experts have also urged people to try other methods.

Clinical lead for pain medicine at the Royal Berkshire Hospital, Dr Deepak Ravindran said there is a connection to a person's mental state and their physical pain.

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He explained that focusing on things such as breath work and mindfulness could help alleviate pain.

If you're in serious pain, you should always speak to your GP who might be able to refer you to a pain clinic.

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