Pain relief treatments come in many forms and dominance, are available by prescription or over-the-counter (OTC), and treat all kinds of physical pain—including that brought on by chronic conditions, sudden trauma, and cancer.
Pain medications work best if they are used as the first signs of pain occur. If you wait until the symptoms have worsened, the medication may not work as well.
Different medications are used depending on the type of pain. For minor complaints, such as muscle sprains or headaches, an over-the-counter (OTC) pain reliever will usually do. Prescription pain relievers, especially opiate analgesics -- are normally reserved for moderate-to-severe pain – such as that seen after surgery, trauma, or from certain diseases like cancer or rheumatoid arthritis. Other common "painful" situations in which analgesics find use include labor, back pain, fibromyalgia, and urinary tract infections.