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There Really Is Such Thing As Drowning Your Pain In Booze, According To Science
Have you ever noticed how downing a few beers makes you feel invincible? That’s because alcohol, in addition to annihilating your inhibitions, also increases your tolerance to pain while simultaneously dulling it, according to new research.
Writing in The Journal of Pain, researchers at Greenwich University in the United Kingdom found that alcohol isn’t just an effective painkiller, but apparently is more effective than most over-the-counter drugs. In fact, a stiff drink can be similar in effect to even the most powerful prescription opioids. But that doesn’t mean you should necessarily ditch your Tylenol regiment for a night at the bar.
The study overall indicates that in order to really have an impact on pain, you would have to cross well beyond the threshold for low-risk drinking habits, which allow women to drink only three alcoholic beverages on any given day, and no more than seven drinks per week, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.
What the study really indicates about alcohol is that “it can be compared to opioid drugs such as codeine, and the effect is more powerful than [Tylenol],” said Trevor Thompson, one of the authors of the study.
And it turns out, the more people drank, the less pain they felt. The evidence Thompson and his colleagues collected from 18 controlled experiments involving 404 subjects was overwhelming. Three or four average drinks that produce a blood-alcohol content around 0.08%, which is conveniently also the legal impairment level, can reduce pain by up to 25%, while also influencing pain tolerance.
But many people who experience regular pain know this already. According to PainAction, past studies have indicated that as many as 28% of of those with chronic pain issues utilize alcohol as part of their pain management strategy. And although many modern doctors consider drinking as pain management a slippery slope into addiction, not everyone is so quick to dismiss alcohol and its painkilling properties.
"It is cheaper than morphine,” reported Dr. Harold George Wolff of Cornell to the Association of American Physicians meeting at Atlantic City as early as 1941. “Of course alcohol is habit-forming but an alcohol habit is less difficult to deal with than a morphine habit. Whiskey is one of the cheapest and best painkillers known to man." It’s no wonder that doctors on the battlefield during World War II used alcohol to treat everything from toothaches to traumatic injuries.
Though excessive drinking can obviously cause long-term damage to your body (and your poor liver in particular), those wary of developing an opioid addiction might be keen to consider this as alternative painkiller — in moderation, of course.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Known for acting on impulse, President Donald Trump has adopted an uncharacteristically go-slow approach to whether to hold Iran responsible for attacks on Saudi oil facilities, showing little enthusiasm for confrontation as he seeks re-election next year.
After state-owned Saudi Aramco's plants were struck on Saturday, Trump didn't wait long to fire off a tweet that the United States was "locked and loaded" to respond, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blamed Iran.
But four days later, Trump has no timetable for action. Instead, he wants to wait and see the results of investigations into what happened and is sending Pompeo to consult counterparts in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates this week.
That sound you're hearing is Army senior leaders exhaling a sigh of relief, because the Army has surpassed its recruiting goal for the year.
After failing to meet recruiting goals in 2018, the Army put the pedal to the metal and "did some soul searching," said Acting Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy, to ensure that they'd meet their 2019 goal. It must have paid off — the service announced on Tuesday that more than 68,000 recruits have signed on as active-duty soldiers, and more soldiers have stuck around than they expected.
Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein transformed into the Cigarette Smoking Man from "The X-Files" on Tuesday when explaining why UFO enthusiasts should avoid storming the mythical Area 51 installation in Nevada.
"All joking aside, we're taking it very seriously," Goldfein told reporters during the Air Force Association's annual Air, Space, and Cyber Conference. "Our nation has secrets, and those secrets deserve to be protected. The people deserve to have our nation's secrets protected."
SAN DIEGO — A San Diego-based Navy SEAL acquitted of murder in a closely watched war crimes trial this summer has filed a lawsuit against two of his former attorneys and a military legal defense nonprofit, according to a complaint filed in federal court in Texas on Friday.
NATIONAL HARBOR, Maryland — The Air Force is reviewing whether some airmen's valor awards deserve to be upgraded to the Medal of Honor, Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein said on Tuesday.
Goldfein revealed that several airmen are being considered for the nation's highest military award during a press conference at the Air Force Association's annual Air, Space, and Cyber Conference. He declined to say exactly who could receive the Medal of Honor, pending the outcome of the review process.