Chronic Pain Treatment Options

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Chronic Pain Treatment Options

Chronic pain affects people of all ages and all life situations. However, perhaps the most difficult type of chronic pain to treat is pain experienced by former addicts. After all, in many cases, their chronic pain was the catalyst behind them seeking relief or escape, which resulted in them being addicted to a harmful substance of some kind in the first place.

Therefore, when dealing with former addicts, treating chronic pain correctly and effectively is a must. Fortunately, there are many options available to help those who live with chronic pain daily.

Oral Medications:

It may seem counterintuitive to suggest a medication for someone who was addicted to a harmful substance. However, if a person is experiencing chronic pain, expecting them to simply live with the pain is not realistic. Therefore, it is wise to offer them other options that are not as harmful to their body as what they were previously abusing. The following are two examples of medications that help with chronic pain:

  • NSAIDs: Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs, are types of medication that are very effective in treating acute bone or muscular pain and can even help with some chronic pain syndromes. Doctors should keep an eye on patients using this type of drug; however, due to the risk of damage to the kidneys and gastrointestinal system when taken long-term.
  • Antidepressants: Tricyclic antidepressants have pain relieving properties. These medications are taken in lower doses and sometimes on an as-needed basis to relieve pain. This differs from how the medications are utilized when treating depression.

Personalized Physical Therapy:

A physical therapist is a professional skilled at working with the body in a manner that allows the patient to regain motion or to lessen pain associated with various issues.

In some cases, when chronic pain is associated with an injury, a physical therapist can work with a pain sufferer to build up that joint or muscle so that the pain is less noticeable or goes away altogether. Of course, physical therapy doesn’t help all chronic pain sufferers, but it is a valid treatment option for some.

Acupuncture:

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) documented the safety and effectiveness of acupuncture when it is utilized to treat many chronic pain conditions. Although the practice has been around for some 3,000 years and is occasionally thought to be a bit hokey by some, according to the NIH and many who have found relief through its practice, acupuncture is still a valid treatment option for chronic pain. The conditions that can be treated range from facial pain and headaches to back and postoperative pain and virtually everything else in between.

  • How it works: Acupuncture works by improving the body’s functions, promoting the natural self-healing process. It is accomplished through the insertion of fine, sterile needles into the skin on the acupoints of the body. Some acupuncturists also perform other stimulation techniques, such as heat therapy, manual massage and the application of herbal medicines to increase the treatment’s effectiveness.

There are many other treatment options for chronic pain. They may include (but are not limited to):

  • Chiropractic care
  • Injections of medication or steroids into various muscles or spine
  • Application of medicated creams to affected regions of the body

It’s important to remember that there are a variety of options when it comes to chronic pain management. Thus, no sufferer should feel hope and should not give up the quest to find a treatment that works for them.


Sources

General Treatment options: https://www.asra.com/page/46/treatment-options-for-chronic-pain

Acupuncture information: http://cim.ucsd.edu/clinical-care/acupuncture.shtml

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