People who are finding that their painkillers are not helping them have been encouraged to discuss the matter with their GP.
Dr Rob Hicks, a UK media doctor and practising GP, explained that despite the fact that it is "common sense" to ask doctors and pharmacists for advice, many people still don't.
The comments come after research from Opinion Health found that women are 'putting up and shutting up' when it comes to enduring pain.
Indeed, 86 per cent of female respondents had taken painkillers in the last year that had not offered sufficient relief from their symptoms.
Dr Hicks added: "If you read the label and follow the instructions, the person is much more likely to be safe, and the treatments are much more likely to be effective.
"Obviously everybody knows about over-dosing, but many people don't appreciate that they are under-dosing."
He added that it is worth discussing codeine in particular with a health professional because some people are worried about the fact that it is potentially addictive.
© Adfero Ltd
Private treatment news: 7 April 2011