Monday, June 2, 2014

Chronic Pain and Prescription Drug Abuse

Chris Newcomb, M.Div.
Chronic pain is nothing to smile about.  It is often a crippling, debilitating, and frustrating experience that puts hope out of reach and makes comfort a distant memory of the past.  It is very real.  Too many people suffer every moment of every day with this issue!
Enter: prescription drugs.  While these modern medical marvels often do wonders for people's chronic pain, the important question to ask is: at what cost?  That is, for people requiring prescription medications to manage their chronic pain, is it worth it to risk getting addicted to those same medications?  This is a very important yet difficult question to answer because some people really do need to be on these medicines for pain relief.
The point of the practice of medicine is to cure disease and restore health.  The Hippocratic Oath that doctors uphold instructs each practitioner to, "abstain from doing harm."  In most cases, doctors who prescribe chronic pain medication are doing just that: abstaining from doing harm.  They sincerely want their patients to cease being in pain and they prescribe what they believe to be the right medicines accordingly.  However, many doctors do not understand prescription pill addiction and they write excessive refills that only keep a patient addicted.  
If that is not bad enough, chronic pain patients also deal with the stigma of being considered a 'drug addict' even though they never took the drugs to get high but rather for pain management.  Many try to wean themselves off their medication only to fail and have to go back on it because the physical and mental withdrawal symptoms are just too much.  Add in a sense of failure with their new budding addiction and you have a self-esteem disaster waiting to happen all because they started taking the medication as prescribed by their doctor!
There is no easy answer to this problem it would seem.  However, that is not the whole truth.  People can get off of prescription pain medication and often find that their pain is not what they remembered it to be before they started using addictively.
At The Coleman Institute, we believe that addiction is a 'no-fault' disease.  It is a biological problem that turns into a behavioral problem.  Addiction centers around two reasons for use: 'recreation' or  'chronic pain'.  We believe anyone can be free from addiction to alcohol and/or drugs.  If you or someone you love is in need detox off of alcohol, opiates, benzos, Methadone or Suboxone, please do not hesitate to call Jennifer Pius or Amy Stewart at 1-877-773-3869.

1 comment:

  1. I think it is fair for the most part. I only worked in a doctor's office for a few weeks last summer and most of the patients who asked for drugs were probably abusing them.