Compare Muscle Relaxers: OTC vs Prescription, Side Effects, Cost

Compare Muscle Relaxers: OTC vs Prescription, Side Effects, Cost

Sometimes the first muscle relaxers a doctor prescribes does not work as well as expected. It may be necessary to try an alternative if the initial prescription is not effective. Many drugs interact with muscle relaxers and a person should keep their health care provider informed of all prescription and non-prescription medications he or she is taking.

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Continue reading more about cyclobenzaprine high effects that lead some people to abuse the drug. Research is lacking on whether or not antispasmodics are more effective in treating muscle pain and spasms than NSAIDs or acetaminophen. Antispasmodics have more side effects than NSAIDs and acetaminophen, so it’s important to talk to your healthcare what is stronger baclofen or flexeril provider about the benefits and risks of taking these medications. Over-the-counter pain relievers can help relieve back pain, neck pain, and other muscle pain symptoms for many people. If you’re unsure about using over-the-counter muscle relaxers, reach out to your doctor to discuss if OTC pain relief is the right solution for you.

Summary table for antispastic medications

Anyone who is chronically abusing the drug will experience withdrawal. The process of quitting the drug is presented various withdrawal signs and symptoms. Naproxen (Aleve) is a popular and accessible nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug. It treats muscle pain, migraines, osteoarthritis, headaches, cramps, fever, and minor injuries. This over the counter muscle relaxer daily usage is generally safe when someone follows the instructions.

  • When joint pains or arthritis are becoming a nuisance, all measures should be taken to avoid or limit the intake of habit-forming medication.
  • It can treat muscle spasms that occur with acute muscle conditions when a person combines it with rest and physical therapy.
  • In 2016, 67% of the hospital visits for continuing muscle relaxant use also included opioid therapy.
  • Muscle relaxants can be addictive, so it’s ideal to use them for the shortest possible time and keep them away from other adults and children.
  • Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets.
  • Even if you have failed previously, relapsed, or are in a difficult crisis, we stand ready to support you.

This topical OTC solution is made mostly from natural components to provide the relief. MSM, known as Methylsulfonylmethane, decreases pressure on the veins by reducing fluid congestion. All three ingredients are found in Penetrex OTC muscle relaxer.

Tell your medical provider what other medications, OTC drugs, dietary supplements, or herbs that you take to avoid interactions and side effects. In this article, we’ll explore OTC and prescription muscle relaxers. Muscle relaxers are not a class of drugs—meaning they do not all have the same chemical structure or work the same way in the brain. Rather, the term muscle relaxer is used to describe a group of drugs that act as central nervous system depressants and have sedative and musculoskeletal relaxant properties. The primary adverse side effects of cyclobenzaprine are related to the central nervous system (CNS), and include drowsiness, dizziness, and nervousness (10).

What do muscle relaxers help treat?

If you take them together, the side effects are much more intense, which can be dangerous. Each type of prescription muscle relaxer has different possible side effects. It’s important to talk to your provider or a pharmacist about possible side effects of the specific medication you’re taking or thinking of taking.

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Do not use Flexeril if you have taken an MAO inhibitor in the past 14 days. MAO inhibitors include isocarboxazid, linezolid, phenelzine, rasagiline, selegiline, and tranylcypromine. These active ingredients typically make up joint supplements although, these are also widely used in creams, sprays, and gels for localized relief of aching joints. An Australian study on topical creams containing glucosamine sulfate showed significant pain reduction result in 4-8 weeks.

The best option depends on the injury or underlying condition and factors such as the person’s age and current medications. Anyone with muscle spasms and pain should consult a doctor, who may prescribe or recommend a muscle relaxer. There are currently no over-the-counter muscle relaxers in the United States, but acetaminophen and NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen, can help manage sore muscles. If you have tried the medications discussed above but your stubborn muscle pain is unresolved, it may be time to discuss prescription options with your provider.

However, depending on the severity, you may need to take medications called skeletal muscle relaxants to treat muscle spasms that are beyond at-home treatments. Back and neck pain can be caused by muscles that are spasming. However, although these medicines may help general pain and inflammation, pain related to muscle spasms may not respond to these medications. In these cases, a muscle relaxer may be prescribed, to help with the spasming, tense muscles. Muscle relaxers—often prescribed along with an NSAID—can help reduce spasms, relieve pain, and improve mobility.

Antispastics directly affect the spinal cord or the skeletal muscles with the aim of improving muscle tightness and spasms. Now that you understand which muscle relaxers apply best to your pain, let’s see which ones are the most cost effective. Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has only approved one CBD prescription drug, Epidiolex, which may be prescribed to treat two rare forms of epilepsy. While Epidiolex is regulated by the FDA as a prescription drug, “many [OTC CBD products] are not regulated, [so] the effectiveness between products is not consistent,” Dr. Lewis said.

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