Why do I get aches and pains?

Pain is your body’s natural way of telling you that something is wrong. There could be many reasons for aches and pains.

Strains and sprains

We might get aches and pains in our muscles following a tough game of sport, or after completing physically demanding tasks at work or at home.

These strains and sprains occur when muscles, joints and ligaments have been used too much, or too soon. Damage to muscles is usually accompanied by inflammation.

Muscle strains and sprains can also be a result of poor sitting or lifting posture.

Cold and Flu

It can be tough having to deal with the miserable symptoms of colds or the flu, such as headache, fever and a sore throat. But your body can also feel achy and sore as a result of colds or the flu.

Muscle pains experienced during a cold or flu can be the result of your immune system releasing chemicals into your body to help protect and fight off infection. These chemicals can affect muscle proteins, producing muscle pains.

How do I relieve body aches and pains?

Pain normally works as your body’s early warning system, so it can be helpful to address the source of pain where you can. This could mean changing the layout of your office desk to improve your sitting posture or to reduce strain on your hands and wrists.

If you already have a muscle strain or sprain:

  • Rest that part of the body.
  • Take steps to reduce swelling and inflammation in the first few days - follow the RICE (Rest, Ice, Compress, Elevate) principle and, if needed, take a pain reliever such as Nurofen.
    • You can also try a medicated dermal patch like Nurofen Duralast, which is applied to your skin to provide targeted relief from muscular pain and tenderness for up to 24 hours.
  • After the first few days once any swelling has reduced, heat therapy can often feel more soothing
  • Try some gentle exercise like walking or swimming
  • Treat yourself to a massage to help soothe aching muscles

These steps can help aid recovery. Pain relievers such as Nurofen can help temporarily relieve aches and pains. If you are unsure about how to relieve your aches and pains, speak to your healthcare professional.

When you should be concerned about aches and pains

If your pain persists or if you are concerned for any reason, don't ignore it - visit your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible.