What to Know About Pain Relief Patches

Dec 19,2022

You want to stop suffering pain and make it go away as quickly as possible. It is understandable that you might be nervous about taking medication. For pain relief, many people turn to pain relief patches.

Pain patches can be made from traditional Chinese herbs, in a formulation or lidocaine. This makes it affordable to use topical pain relief.

Popular pain patches use herbs to provide pain relief and speed healing & lodocaine.

The Principle Behind Why Pain Relief Patches Can Relieve Pain

  • How do pain relief patches work?

  • Applicable symptoms of the pain relief patch
  • How to use a pain relief patch?
  • Precautions for the use of pain relief patches
Mike Jones
Senior Editor - Product Reviews
Dr. Mike Jones is America trained chiropractor who specializes in sports injury and spinal health. He graduated from Palmer College of Chiropractic in the United States. Now he is practicing in Singapore.

1. How Do Pain Relief Patches Work?

how do pain relief patches work

A pain relief patch is applied on the skin's surface. It is neither an internal drug nor a drug injected into the body. This is why many people are still unsure how the patch relieves their pain. Here's what the patch does to ease pain.

The pain relief patch is a paste made from plant extracts or animal oil, mixed with medication to form a gelatinous material. This can be coated on one side of cloth or paper and applied to the affected or painful area for a long period.

The poultice, which is used mostly on the skin, is usually made from strong-scent drugs. With the introduction of drugs, the poultice can open knots and travel stagnation directly where the pain is. It penetrates the skin to produce anti-inflammatory, pain relief, invigorates the blood and silt, passes through the meridians, channels, opens the orifices, penetrates bones, dispels cold, etc.

There are two types of patches. One is used to treat boils, carbuncles, swollen ulcers, ulcers, and other diseases. The other is used for meridians or other diseases. 

They are typically applied to meridian lines. Plaster on the body stimulates nerve endings and dilates blood vessels by reflexes. It also promotes local blood circulation, nutrition, anti-swelling, and anti-inflammation. 

The drug penetrates the skin through the acupuncture points to reach the subcutaneous tissues. This gives rise to a strong pharmacological impact on trauma, skin diseases, and mucosal lesions. All have antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and pain relief. Stimulating drugs that stimulate the nerve reflexes can regulate muscle function and increase human immunity. Once the drug is absorbed through the skin and mucous membranes, it then enters the bloodstream via blood vessels or lymphatics. This can lead to systemic drug effects, and may even be used for the treatment of diseases.

The skin absorbs the plaster over four steps:

1). The plaster is applied to your skin.

2). The medicine in the plaster will soften the stratum corneal, so the stratum corneum gets thinner.

3). After a prolonged time, the pores above the skin will become open. When it opens, the medicine will begin entering the skin.

4). The active ingredients in the plaster reach subcutaneous tissue.

2. Applicable Symptoms Of The Pain Relief Patch

Applicable Symptoms Of The Pain Relief Patch

Rheumatism & rheumatoid

This is a painful, chronic, often recurrent, orthopedic condition that causes inflammation in the joints.

It is usually caused by the invasion of cold and wind or problems with the immune system.

The most common problem in the knee joints is an autoimmune disorder. The disease causes pain and discomfort in patients' joints once it has developed.

Traumatic Synovitis

The synovial fluid is a liquid that the synovial cells secrete from the knee. This keeps the cartilage surface slippery and allows for more motion. Overexertion or trauma can damage the synovial membrane. This fluid then creates a lot of fluid, increasing pressure in the joint and causing discomfort, such as pain or swelling in the knee.


This condition is more common in overweight older people, especially those who are middle-aged or overweight. The knee joint may be painful and swollen. Sometimes, there may also be a sensation that the knee is moving with friction.

Meniscus Injury

A common injury among athletes is meniscal injury. After an injury, you will feel a tearing sensation in your knee. This is followed by joint pain, limited movement, and walking with a limp. There is swelling in the joint and slippage. The joint can also feel bone-on-bone pain when it is moved.

Ligament Injuries

The joint capsule of the knee joint has a loose and weak structure. The stability of the joint relies primarily on ligaments, muscles, and the medial collateral and lateral ligaments. Most injuries to the knee ligaments are due to trauma. Patients can experience severe pain and swell around the joints, joint effusion, joint subcutaneous petechiae, and restricted movement. This is a serious problem that severely affects their work life.


Proliferative degenerative arthritis is also known as knee osteophytes. This is not a condition that causes joint inflammation, but a long-term cartilage degenerative lesion. It can cause pain in squatting, stiffness and joint pain, redness and swelling, as well as limited function.

3. How To Use a Pain Relief Patch?

How To Use a Pain Relief Patch?

Step 1: Apply in the right place

It is generally easier to locate an injury on the body's surface, so it is easier to understand the position of the pain-relieving patch. Pain patches are often applied approximately for pains that are not located on the body's surface. This can affect the pain patch's healing ability. It is best to feel the pain point first before applying plaster. The pain patch should then be spread to the most painful area. This will improve the curative effects.

Step 2: Heat before applying

The pain-relieving patches’ effectiveness will be affected if it is not properly prepared or if there are too many folds. Before applying the pain relieving patch, first, remove the liner from the plaster and apply it to the area most in pain. 

Next, cut off the excess liner and continue pasting the plaster in the same direction as the pain point. You can apply the plaster smoothly and accurately to the most painful spot by separating the liner from the plaster. Winter is a time when the temperature drops, stickiness is reduced and adhesion is not good. 

After pasting, you can apply the plaster with a hot water bag. You should keep the heat at a low temperature as the plaster's ingredients (ice chips, camphor, etc.) will evaporate quickly and cause irreparable damage.

Step 3: Clean the Painful Area

The pain relief patch will not stick well to areas with unclean skin or hair. To help evaporate the medicinal effects, it is important to dry the area and acupuncture points with a towel before you apply the ointment. You should shave any additional hair to make the pain-relieving patch paste stick. It will also help avoid the irritation of tearing the hair. Avoid applying the cream to the skin if it is damaged or has become ulcerated.

Step 4: Remove Pain Relieving Patches Within 12 Hours

After applying the pain relief patch, what is the best time for me to remove or replace it? Many people apply the pain relief patch for two to three days. They even think it will fall off. The patch can generally be taken off within 8-12 hours. 

After the skin has absorbed the active components of the patch, A delay in removing the patch is not recommended. It will only increase the skin's burden, impair the pores and cause local dermatitis. You may need to repeat the paste. To ensure that the skin rests properly, the affected area should be cleaned between the time gap. The skin needs to breathe so it is important to wash the affected area between the two patches.

 Step 5: Don’t Take A Bath Immediately After Removing The Patch

Once the pain patches have been applied, the pores will be open. You'll feel tingling if you take a bath immediately. Before you take a bath, you should wait at least 30 minutes for the pores to close.

4. Precautions For The Use Of Pain Relief Patches

Precautions For The Use Of Pain Relief Patches

Plastering should be avoided on the head and face, particularly near the eyes and nose. Plastering should not be done on an allergic body. If you feel tingling, burning, or itchy after plastering for a few moments, you should immediately remove it. Avoid eating spicy or cold foods during the treatment.

The pain patches should only be applied to the most painful or acupuncture point for knee pain. To avoid skin allergies, pay attention to how long the pain patches are left on the skin. Reduce knee pain by limiting your daily activities. 

Don't do things that could cause damage to the knee like squatting, climbing stairs, or sitting on a low stool for long periods. To determine the source of your knee pain, it is recommended that you visit a regular hospital ortho or rheumatology clinic.

1). Pain patches work is done on the surface, it has an anti-swelling, anti-inflammatory, and soothing pain effect. But it could only temporarily relieve and not eliminate the root cause.

2). Benadryl is an ingredient in many pain relief patches. Although it could be used for three to four days, it can have the side effect that you feel sleepy.

3). The long-term plaster could cause pain relieving patches "tolerance". To take effect, the dosage of future plaster must be increased.

4). Plastering excessively or indiscriminately can trigger skin allergies, redness, itching, ulcers, inflammation, and skin allergic reactions.

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