A little preparation is not a bad thing: Getting Narcan.

Obligatory disclaimer: I AM NOT A MEDICAL DOCTOR.  SEEK PROFESSIONAL ADVICE AND TRAINING.

There's really no good way to start an article about the epidemic of opiate overdoses and deaths in the United States.  It's a terrible thing.  Unlike a lot of articles out there and stereotyping that happens, a nontrivial number of opioid deaths are due to accidental overdoses of painkillers taken by folks who are trying to manage chronic pain.  I say this as someone whose dental health history reads like Hellraiser fanfic.  If you're in so much pain that you can't even think straight most of the …

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A brother of the Bene Capsaicin lends his skills to the field of medical pain management.

Pain specialist Dr. Eske Aasvang of Denmark is trying a new compound in clinical pain relief trials: Capsaicin. Yes, the very same compound that makes hot peppers hot, and unwary college students who've never heard of chicken vindaloo before want to shoot themselves. Capsaicin, as it turns out, bonds tightly to the receptors of C-type nerve fibres, which trainsmit status messages to the brain that are interpreted as pain. Those receptors will fire briefly (as anyone who's ever eaten chili can attest to) but then go silent because the nerves will have exhausted their supplies of neurotransmitters. It is expected …

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The weekend of recovery in review.

As I've been talking about lately (probably to the point of annoyance), I underwent my second root canal last Friday, and I've been laying low to give myself a chance to recover. Dental work always knocks me on my six for some reason, probably due to elevated levels of stress hormones and my body trying to deal with all of the unusual chemicals that winds up in it. I've been cutting back on the amount of Motrin I've been taking, in particular - for over a week I'd been taking twelve to sixteen 200mg tablets every day to keep the pain …

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