Chronic Pain Disorders and Opiate Addiction
According to the National Library of Medicine, millions of people suffer from some form of chronic pain. This debilitating condition is usually treated with opiates. These drugs are extremely addictive and offer severe long term side effects as well as what’s been called the worst withdrawal symptoms of any drug.
What Causes Chronic Pain?
The causes of chronic pain vary depending on the individual and life circumstances. A few of these causes are:
- Nerve damage
- Muscle damage
- Skeletal damage
- Damage to the spine
- Damage to the overall nervous system
Many more conditions cause chronic pain. These are only a few. Unfortunately, as you age chronic pain becomes more likely. Old injuries act up or arthritis sets in. Fortunately, there are treatments for chronic pain, but unfortunately many of these treatments begin with an addictive substance such as opiates.
What are the Traditional Treatments for Chronic Pain?
Traditional treatments for chronic pain include opiates and other drugs. These drugs are extremely addictive and sometimes dangerous. As the body becomes accustomed to opiates, it takes higher and higher doses to achieve the same relief. These higher doses are dangerous and many people, seeking relief, become addicted to them.
A few become addicted to the point where they are unable to stop taking the drug without suffering withdrawal and more pain than they were originally in. Once addiction sets in it is very difficult to stop taking them.
What is the Treatment for Opiate Addiction?
There are several ways to treat opiate addiction. You can decide on inpatient or outpatient treatment depending on your circumstances and lifestyle.
- Inpatient care is a residential treatment where you have support 24 hours a day. This form of treatment is intensive and the medical staff can help to balance your care along with your treatment for pain.
- Outpatient care is a nonresidential treatment where you do not have the support you do with inpatient care but you do have freedom.
The treatment options are:
- Replacement medications such as:
- Holistic treatments
Each treatment option is available in both inpatient and outpatient settings. There are also natural remedies for chronic pain such as:
- Herbal medications like:
o Willow bark
o Kava kava
- Massage such as:
o Deep tissue
- Stimulation therapy such as:
o Tens unit therapy
o Spinal cord stimulation
o Peripheral nerve stimulation
o Deep brain stimulation
Consult a doctor before using any of these therapies. Many doctors are knowledgeable about alternatives to opiates, particularly for people who have issues with opiates.
Is there Help for Both Opiate Addiction and Chronic Pain?
Yes, there is help for both opiate addiction and chronic pain. There are treatment centers that specialize in treating them both at the same time. You do not have to be dependent on opiates in order to find relief from your pain. To explore your treatment options call us at 800-405-7172. We can help you find the treatment that is right for you.