The misuse and abuse of prescription painkiller (opioid) medications in America has become epidemic. The answer comes in a March 2016 policy statement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) where a simple solution was presented - early intervention of pain management with non-pharmacologic approaches. Consider the CDC’s statistics:
- Overdose deaths involving prescription opioids have increased 4X since 1999
- Misuse or abuse of prescription drugs, including opioid-analgesic pain relievers, is responsible for much of the recent increase in drug-poisoning deaths
- Opioid prescribing continues to fuel the epidemic
Opioid medications include the prescription painkillers oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, morphine, fentanyl, Vicodin, OxyContin, Percocet, Methadone as well as the street drug heroin. According to the National Safety Council these highly addictive pain killers are prescribed inappropriately for back and neck pain by more than 70% of medical doctors and 99% of medical doctors prescribe opioids for longer than the 3-day period recommended by the CDC.
Pain, both acute and chronic (pain that has lasted for over 12 weeks) is a disease processes, not an inconvenient symptom, and needs to be addressed by treating the underlying cause. An integrative approach to pain management is the ideal solution: treat the cause of the pain and enhance the body’s healing response with diet, exercise, nutrition, and rest.
An integrative Chiropractic Physician has the wide variety of tools required to treat chronic and acute (sudden onset) pain without drugs. Back and neck pain, headaches, fibromyalgia are common conditions treated in the integrative chiropractic office because it works. Here is the research:
- The National Fibromyalgia and Chronic Pain Associationpromotes integrative care and recognizes the importance of spinal health and chiropractic care as a non-pharmacologic pain treatment model
- Acute and chronic chiropractic patients experienced better outcomes in pain, functional disability, and patient satisfaction,JMPT
- For neck pain and headaches, cervical spine (neck) manipulations are associated with significant improvement in headache outcomes, Duke University
Click here for more information on the Opioid Epidemic in America. Your long-term health management is directly related to your lifestyle and choice of treatment in treating pain. Choosing natural, safe and non-pharmacologic approaches may be just what the doctor ordered.