The truth about painkillers

I’m scratching my head to remember the last time I had to take a painkiller…  Oh yes – it was on holiday in August in Roquebrune Cap-Martin. We’d been on our feet all day, trying to fit in about eight Nice museums from our special Matisse pass – and now, as we walked back to our little rental flat, Steve saying how he was looking forward to a beer, all I was craving was paracetamol, nurofen or both. I was also craving caffeine – in any form – just sensing it would help my thumping head. I don’t often get a headache but when I do I want to attack it from every front.

In the end I took nurofen, drank green tea, and went to bed for an hour before soaking in a lavender bath. Then I was ready for my pre-dinner glass of wine.

It worked for me… And it also got my brain cells working overtime thinking about the many unusual cures that can work for a headache. Back home I spoke to Dr Dougall McCorry, a consultant neurologist at BMI Priory Hospital, who explained how coffee, tea, cola, chocolate and even sex can help a headache.

But sometimes only a painkiller will hit the spot – and as a country we spend around £530 million on them every year. You can spend a few pence on paracetamol or several pounds on dihydrocodeine – but does price even matter?

Here’s what I found out when I spoke to Boots pharmacist Manny Johal for Yahoo!