Nitric Oxide is undoubtedly a super supplement whose significance spans across a number of body functions. Pain is an undesirable feeling that none of us wants to be in not even for a single moment. However, we often find ourselves in pain caused by one reason or the other. Nitric oxide supplements have been proven to be an excellent means to provide pain relief. It works through a number of ways including mediation of the analgesic effect of morphine and other opioids.
Pain and the Nervous System
Any discussion about pain cannot progress without the mention of the nervous system. As a matter of fact, neurotransmission is the messenger of pain and other feelings. An interruption of the nervous system automatically affects all the body feelings. For the nerves to function well, they must be structurally intact. The nerves must have a membrane potential maintained by sodium and potassium ion pumps that are responsible for deriving energy from ATP synthesis.
Health conditions such as diabetes at times compromise blood circulation and the delivery of nutrients and oxygen into the body tissues. This affects the nerves and causes them to malfunction. Inadequate oxygen and nutrients lower ATP synthesis and affects the membrane potential. When everything is normal, the nervous system operates at -70 millivolts and signaling pain at -20 millivolts. Reduced oxygen and nutrients makes the membrane potential to fall as low as -20 millivolts.
In these circumstances, it takes just a little stimulus to reach the signaling pain threshold. Poor blood circulation through the nervous system prevents the nerves from sending the right temperature and pressure signals to the brain, and this causes pain.
How Nitric Oxide Helps
Nitric oxide dilates the blood vessels thereby increasing the supply of nutrients and oxygen into the tissues including the nervous system. This helps the system re-establish its membrane potential. In as much as diabetic patients are advised to take pain killers so as to modulate the pain, these drugs do not help as much because they do not restore the normal functioning of the nervous system.
Acute injury or chronic circulation problems reduce perfusion, which in turn causes edema or swelling. This added accumulation of fluid pressurizes the nervous system thus causing pain. The swelling also exerts pressure on the capillaries tasked with the responsibility of providing oxygen to the nerves and tissues.
Nitric oxide boosts the arterial flow to the nerves as well as the venous drainage away from the nerves. This prevents any swelling from occurring because all the fluids are drained away from the injured or pressurized region.
According to medical research conducted over a decade ago, nitric oxide was shown to be the mediator of the analgesic effect of morphine and other opioids. The morphine burns to a receptor in the nerve cell and initiates a release of nitric oxide. This causes a diminution in pain which is mediated by cGMP. Therefore, raising the levels of nitric oxide can fight off pain.
The impact of nitric oxide as a reliever of pain is strongly felt in diabetic patients. Diabetes in its nature interferes with the circulation of blood through the vessels. This disturbs the membrane potential of the nerves and decreases the stimuli necessary for nerve pain signaling. The impaired circulation also leads to swelling in the extremities that exerts pressure on the nerves. This also causes pain.
Diffuse extremity pain is commonly associated with peripheral neuropathy. By increasing cGMP, nitric oxide directly reduces neuropathic pain.
Nitric oxide, therefore, is an essential supplement in fighting pain caused by conditions such as diabetes. Instead of depending on pain killers that only tackle the surface of the pain problem, you need nitric oxide because it addresses the root of the problem and eliminates the pain for good