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What Are Some Uses of Aspirin?

Aspirin is an analgesic, or pain killer.
Aspirin.
Aspirin can offer pain relief to dogs in the same way it does humans.
The anatomy of a heart attack. Aspirin may help prevent clots and help protect against a heart attack.
Aspirin is commonly used to help treat headaches.
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  • Written By: J.Gunsch
  • Edited By: Niki Foster
  • Last Modified Date: 11 September 2014
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Aspirin was discovered as an effective analgesic, or pain killer, in 1899 by Heinrich Dreser, a German chemist. Spirea, a shrub of the rose family, contains the chemicals that make up aspirin. Today, it is mostly made from synthetic acids and has many uses in addition to pain relief.

This medication is an anti-inflammatory drug as well as a pain killer. This means that at the same time that it is working to block pain, it is also healing. For example, when a person has a headache, it is often the result of swelling in the blood vessels of the brain. Aspirin reduces the swelling so that the pain is less likely to recur when the analgesic properties wear off. It is also effective in reducing fevers.

Aspirin is also an anti-coagulant, which means that it helps to keep the blood thin enough so as not to clot. Normally, when a person becomes injured or cut, the blood quickly begins to clot or thicken so that a person does not ‘bleed out’. Blood clots are very dangerous when they form within the blood vessels, usually causing heart attack, stroke or other circulatory system problems.

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People who have a history of heart attack and those at risk are often advised by their doctor to take small daily doses of aspirin as a preventative measure. It is also a good idea for people who believe that they are having a heart attack to take one while waiting for medical help to arrive. The blood thinning properties of aspirin can save a life in the event of a heart emergency by helping some blood to pass through the body until a clot or blockage can be treated.

Emerging research and medical knowledge about aspirin has begun to reveal that it may prevent or effectively treat even more health problems. This medication is suspected to prevent some forms of cancer. It may also help to treat and prevent cataracts and preeclampsia. However, aspirin also has some side effects, including stomach ulcers. It is dangerous for some people, such as children, those with the blood disorder hemophilia, and women in certain phases of pregnancy.

The use of aspirin can even extend to dogs. It is an effective over-the-counter drug that can be given to a dog in pain. Aspirin has the same pain killing properties for dogs as it does for humans. It is very important never to give this medication to a cat, however, because it is very poisonous to the feline system.

Aspirin is also a good way to preserve flowers. One tablet dissolved in a vase of tepid water keeps cut flowers fresh longer than plain water. For the same reason that aspirin prevents blood from clotting, plant cells are prevented from closing off and dying, which allows them to circulate fluid more easily.

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Discuss this Article

anon356651
Post 6

I seldom take aspirin tablet (four days a year). I only take them if I want to delay my period for at least two days. I am not sure if is healthy. I am anaemic and have poor blood circulation.

42 yr old lady

galen84basc
Post 4

Nice article -- I'm glad that you guys mentioned the side effects of aspirin too, because some people can really have problems with it.

In fact, taking aspirin can even cause heartburn, nausea, and upset stomach.

More serious side effects include dizziness, confusion, bloody stools, vomiting, and hearing loss.

If you experience any of these side effects, including persistent stomach pain, then you should see your doctor immediately to avoid serious complications.

pharmchick78
Post 3

@streamfinder -- If you've experienced aspirin sensitivities in the past, then a daily aspirin dose might not be the best thing for you.

If the only reason you want to take the aspirin is your heart, then maybe your doctor could recommend another method of preventing a heart attack.

All in all, I think that you should talk to your doctor before beginning any aspirin regimen to determine a good low aspirin dosage for you, if it is appropriate.

StreamFinder
Post 2

Is it OK to take baby aspirin if you have experienced aspirin side effects in the past?

I want to start on a regimen of Bayer baby aspirin to help prevent a heart attack (apparently I'm prone to them, according to my doctor) but I used to have an aspirin sensitivity. Nothing serious, but I want to be careful.

I haven't taken any NSAIDs or aspirin for a long time, so I'm not sure how I would react now. Does anybody have any idea?

sputnik
Post 1

To prevent stroke and heart attack, aspirin could be a very easy and inexpensive way to go. However, daily aspirin intake is not for everyone. It can cause internal bleeding, and therefore create serious problems. It is important to discuss it with a doctor prior to starting daily aspirin regimen.

I was taking only 81 milligrams a day, and I was bruising so easily, and 81 milligrams is not strong enough. The lowest beneficial dose apparently is 162 milligrams daily.

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