Drinking beer better for pain relief than painkillers

Updated 2017-05-01 10:01:06 Xinhua

A new study by the University of Greenwich has found that drinking two glasses of beer can be a more effective and obviously more pleasant way to reduce pain than taking painkillers.

"We have found strong evidence that alcohol is an effective painkiller," Dr. Trevor Thompson, who headed the study, told The Sun in a story published on Saturday.

A mean blood alcohol content of approximately 0.08 percent produced a small elevation of pain threshold, and a moderate to large reduction in pain intensity ratings, according to the study published in The Journal of Pain.

Researchers observed 18 studies involving 404 participants who were suffering from chronic pain, such as arthritis. They also provided alcohol versus no-alcohol comparisons for 13 tests of pain threshold, and 9 tests of pain intensity ratings.

Participants in the study reported a mean reduction of pain by 1.25 points when they were asked to rate their pain on a 0-to-10-point scale.

"It can be compared to opioid drugs such as codeine and the effect is more powerful than paracetamol," Thompson said.

Findings suggest that alcohol is an effective analgesic that delivers clinically-relevant reductions in ratings of pain intensity, which could explain alcohol misuse in those with persistent pain despite its potential consequences for long-term health, said the study.

Moreover, a separate study found that moderate drinking can reduce the chances of having a heart attack by a third, according to an earlier report by The Sun.

Despite these benefits, experts warned that excessive drinking will cause other health issues, thus it is advised to see a doctor for a viable long-term pain relief plan.

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