“Inflammation of the muscle can be healed with anti-inflammatory medications, right?”

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“Aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen do have a purpose. Taken properly, they can reduce pain and inflammation in joints and soft tissues, such as muscles and ligaments, by blocking the production of prostaglandins (chemicals that cause inflammation and trigger transmission of the pain signal to the brain). When you are in pain, you tense up to protect the injury from further harm. Your whole body forms a kind of “splint.” Protection takes enormous energy and causes imbalances and tension everywhere. Additionally, you don’t sleep well when you are hurting, and whenever your rest is disturbed, your ability to cope with the injury and make good decisions is diminished.
To start the healing process, take advantage of the comfort levels afforded to you by proper dosage of a painkiller. Feeling better may allow you to move an injured joint or flex an injured muscle just a little, so that you have less need to protect yourself. You’ll be more relaxed. You’ll sleep better, allowing your body to rejuvenate more quickly. And, most important, when you feel comfortable, you will be able to move, increase your range of motion, and pump blood to the injury to promote healing.

A few words of caution:

Pain is your body’s way of communicating clear messages to you about the status of an injury. Don’t use painkillers to mask pain that you need to be evaluating and using for information on treatment. We had one client who took ibuprofen, masked the pain of a stress fracture in her shin, and continued to run—with disastrous long-term consequences. Also, keep in mind that even a product bought “over the counter” is still a medication. NSAIDs have possible side effects of which you need to be aware: nausea, indigestion, diarrhea, and peptic ulcers. Aspirin could cause clotting disorders, prolonged bleeding, colitis, gastrointestinal disorders, ringing in the ears, and aggravation of asthma, hives, and gout. Be careful.