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Pause The Opioid Prescriptions: Alternatives To Pain Management

5/18/18

treatments for opioid addiction

Although the U.S. has been struggling with substance abuse related to morphine, heroin, and cocaine for decades, the opioid epidemic has surged in recent years due to the incredible amount of opioids being used as prescription painkillers.

In fact, a study published in 1980 by Dr. Hershel Jick wrongfully claimed that addiction to opioid medication was rare. As a result of studies like these, doctors began to prescribe opioids to patients suffering from chronic pain without fear of consequences.

Today we understand the true dangers of opioid medications, but what are the alternatives for pain management for those with chronic pain?

Suggested alternatives to opioid medications

In recent months, doctors have been reducing the number of opioid prescriptions they make to limit the risk of opioid addiction in their patients. As a result, medical professionals have been on the hunt for alternatives for treating chronic pain.

Some of the more common alternatives to opioids for pain management include:

  • Medical massage. Massage is clinically proven to help reduce pain by increasing blood flow, reducing inflammation, and improving the rate at which lymphatic fluid can reach areas in the body in need of healing.

  • Physical therapy. Physical therapy and exercise are considered the top treatment for pain management, especially for those with arthritis. Many patients may be afraid to exercise due to pain, but specific exercises can help to improve mobility and reduce pain.

  • Acupuncture. Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese practice that involves stimulating the body's acupoints with fine needles. Acupuncture can reduce pain by increasing the body's production of serotonin and endorphins. It also relaxes the body by increasing the body's production of melatonin.

What about treatments for opioid addiction?

Many organizations have been looking into ways to prevent opioid addiction and the need to prescribe opioids to patients. But what about patients who are already suffering from opiate addiction?

Methadone treatments have proven to be not only one of the most effective treatments for opioid addiction but the most effective treatment for opioid addiction and heroin addiction for more than 50 years.

Methadone works by blocking both the pain receptors and the opioid receptors in the brain, thereby reducing withdrawal symptoms and keeping patients from receiving the euphoric effects of the addictive substance. To learn more about how methadone clinics provide treatments for opioid addiction, contact Sundance Methadone Treatment Center today.


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