Ibuprofen gel – Is there a point in using it?

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Hello everyone I hope your are all well!

I have mentioned before that I am a part of some social media support groups for arthritis. We even created a group on our Facebook page that anyone is more than welcome to join.

Groups such as these are a massive support to people because let’s face it, we all need to have a vent and a release every now and again. Or even just share a success or something that has worked for us.

The great thing about doing this website means it allows me to get my feelings out, even if I can’t physically see who I am talking to.

Whilst reading some posts that get shared on groups it can become upsetting to hear of people’s struggles, how badly they are suffering and how little their doctor is helping them.

There is a programmed response from doctors and other people who have never suffered from arthritis to say;

“Well it’s just a bit of arthritis, there is no cure so just get on with it”.

That kind of pull yourself together tone.

It’s just a bit of arthritis comes from people who will say that their granny had arthritis in their wrists or knees in the last few years of their life.

And their granny didn’t kick up such a fuss they just used something like ibuprofen gel and ‘got on with it’. 

Grandma, Cat, The Old Lady, Granny, Baba

Maybe grannies were just tougher in those days or maybe they never had arthritis they just had joints that were getting slightly stiffer due to inactivity.

They most certainly weren’t using ibuprofen gel for rheumatoid arthritis or moderate to severe osteoarthritis!

Why? Because it doesn’t work!

Do not lose hope we will provide some links at the bottom of things we believe do work!

What’s the point to it?

Absolutely none in my opinion.

I see it all the time on forums and support groups, people saying they have just been diagnosed with arthritis and their doctor has suggested using it could help them.

Don’t waste time looking for it in shops, chemists and certainly don’t waste money getting it on prescription if that is an option flung at you.

But why listen to me let’s have a look at the leaflet you get inside the box and try to see any possible downsides. 

Oh dear.

Swelling of the face! We are supposed to take it to relieve swelling!

Unexplained wheezing and shortness of breath?! Why not we felt crap anyway!

And who doesn’t love a good blister or a rash! Wonder what miracle topical cream they would suggest for treating that?

Do you know as much as a single dose of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can cause erosion to your stomach lining?

A reason they prohibit pregnant women from using it as it can lead to miscarriage.

The drug reduces the blood supply to the stomach which in turn reduces the thickness of the mucus layer that forms the guts protective lining.

This makes the lining easier to breach by stomach acid and other chemicals this then leads to more issues such as acid reflux and stomach bleeding.

But have no fear, all you have to do is report these adverse effects to your doctor and they then have the ability to prescribe you another drug called Prilosec (shelf name, Omeprazole). Oh, wait a minute the problem isn’t solved because you see, that ‘medicine’ also comes with some warning.

I won’t go into all of it because it’s depressing, disconcerting to say the least and of course, dull. If you want to research for yourselves then be my guest but I have picked my highlights below;


Come on who doesn’t cherish the opportunity to turn those tedious minutes in the day into time you can spend getting more familiar with your toilet surroundings and decor.

Think of those times when you was a kid and your mum would ask you to help wash the pots but just a minute or so into it you would magically need the toilet, well you can take these tablets and have a very valid reason for dashing upstairs hand clasping rear exit.

And what symptom accompanies diarrhoea?

Stomach pain!

One of the very reasons we were prescribed this drug, can you see where I am going yet?

Another unwanted side effect can be;


Yes, it’s true whether it is exiting you at a frightening pace or clogging you up like you have ingested some hemp fabric you really will be getting to know your bathroom. 

So my advice pick very calming colours in there, avoid mirrors or anything that can show your reflection and the faces you are now pulling, oh and don’t take the drugs!

Alone, Being Alone, Archetype

And what symptom accompanies constipation?

Alright alright nobody likes a know-it-all, it is, of course, stomach pain.

Not convinced by this? I’ll give you one more;

Bone fracture

As it is stated in the FDA guidance label several studies have shown an association between proton pump inhibitors (PPI which is what Omeprazole is) and an increase in the risk of osteoporosis-related fractures.

In essence, bones being easier to break.

Let’s recap.

  1. The doctor says you have arthritis and believes ibuprofen tablets or gel may help.
  2. You take the advice and suffer the side effect of stomach pain, obviously, this isn’t guaranteed but hear me out.
  3. Go back to the doctor with stomach complaint he then prescribes Omeprazole.
  4. This then opens the door to things such as diarrhoea and constipation both can cause stomach pain which you already have or maybe even worse case you could end up with bones that are more brittle and lacking strength.

Of course, there is no guarantee this can happen but you have to admit they are good reasons to steer clear. Oh and for those taking Methotrexate which I know is a lot of you, taking a proton pump inhibitor such as Omeprazole at the same time, can increase the level of Methotrexate toxicity in the body so be cautious.

Gas Mask, Contamination, Contaminated

My point

The point I am getting at is we know by the very fact that doctors are prescribing so many NSAID drugs like ibuprofen, means that there is inflammation affecting our body.

So if that is the case then take responsibility for your own health and find ways to reduce the inflammation, diet and exercise are major factors in reducing inflammation.

I hear people say “When I talk about health or read stuff about having better health all people talk about is diet and exercise!”

Yes and therein lies the point, we all vitally need to eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly and if you don’t well then don’t bitch and moan when your body develops issues.

It’s easy to say ‘why me?’ 

But it’s a lot harder to hear and understand the answer to that question.

And if you do want to go down the road of topical creams then, by all means, do so, this article isn’t intended to discourage their use, hell I use them every day!

The difference is I use ones from natural products such as plants, in the early days I did use ibuprofen gel under instruction and the relief I got was pathetic especially considering the side effects that come with it.

If you want to look at some natural creams then have a browse through a couple of links below;


The message

Well, I guess that is when possible look for natural alternatives to drugs, ones that don’t have nasty side effects leading you to end up on a medicine merry-go-round.

And as always take responsibility for your own health.

‘Life’s too short!’


Speak soon 


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3 thoughts on “Ibuprofen gel – Is there a point in using it?

  1. I am so glad to read this post. Finally, the truth about this ibuprofen gel that it doesn`t work.
    You see, I have arthritis in my hands and I am looking for ways to just relieve the pain. Ibuprofen gel is what my doctor prescribed me, but I feel it is not helping.
    Thanks for your post and I will check on your recommendations.
    All the best!

  2. Horrible young person, you didn’t fight in the war! Back in my day we’d use the gel and get on with it. Sorry I’m ranting again, please don’t put me in a home.

    Seriously though a nice post and thanks.


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