For many, the words “opioid” and “pain management” go hand in hand. While prescription opioids do reduce pain, they can also be highly addictive and lead someone unknowingly to experience a substance use disorder. With over one and a half billion people suffering from pain, this can lead to an epidemic of substance misuse with many trying to find relief.
There are different types of pain that you can experience, including acute and chronic pain. Acute pain refers to pain experienced on a more short-term scale than chronic pain, and typically lasts between three and six months when directly connected to an injury, like a sprain or fracture. Chronic pain is pain that persists for over twelve weeks relentlessly and can be caused by nerve damage or other triggers. It can lead to a reduction in the ability to move freely, making living normal life unbearable.
If you are suffering from acute or chronic pain, there are other ways to achieve relief. Multiple non-opioid pain management methods are available to you now that you might not even be aware of. The possibilities for pain management without opioids are nearly endless. Here are a few of the best non-opioid pain management possibilities:
- Physical Therapy: It might seem counterintuitive that movement while suffering from pain would help to reduce your pain. However, physical therapy helps you identify the underlying cause of pain by working with a professional physical therapist who will prescribe exercises like posture awareness, strength training, and flexibility. Physical therapy provides a long-term non-opioid pain management solution to the long-term struggle of chronic pain. A physical therapist can consistently adjust exercises to allow a sustainable program of treatment. The best part is that physical therapy is chemical free, because you are not ingesting any substances to reap the pain-reducing benefits.
- IV OTC’s: Intravenous dosages of common over-the-counter medicines, such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen, have been shown to help reduce postoperative pain in patients, thus reducing the need to begin a regimen of opioids. These treatments can be used to combat regular acute pain, particularly for those who cannot consume these medicines orally.
- Antidepressants: Different types of antidepressants, such as duloxetine, amitriptyline, nortriptyline and desipramine, have been used to treat chronic pain conditions like fibromyalgia and polyneuropathy. Additionally, these medications can help keep depression at bay, which is a common side effect of chronic pain. When suffering from long-term serious pain, it can be easy to start to feel hopeless and sad. Antidepressants can help fight the pain exacerbating these depressive thoughts as well as combat the depression head on.
Always remember that non-opioid pain management is available to help with acute or chronic pain. Opioids are not the only solution and should be avoided unless strongly urged by expert medical professionals. There are many options for Washington State addiction treatment to help you work through substance use disorder through non-opioid pain management. If you or someone you love is struggling with opioid addiction, substance misuse, or mental health issues contact The Recovery Village Ridgefield today to learn more about local treatment options and find help to heal.