Many people become addicted to painkillers while treating a legitimate condition, even while under a doctor’s care. This creates a dilemma for Seattle residents who now face two battles: drug dependency and dealing with physical pain. Likewise, a similar problem occurs when former addicts need pain treatment and fear the medicine will derail recovery. It is a challenge, but it is one you can overcome with addiction and pain-management specialists.
Treating Pain in Seattle Drug Addicts
Pain is typically classified under the following three distinctions:
- Acute – sharp and sudden pain often stemming from a recent injury
- Chronic – constant, ongoing and long-lasting pain
- End of life – pain resulting from a terminal illness
Chronic pain can be problematic for drug addicts because it requires regular maintenance. If pain medication is necessary for chronic pain, the doctor will typically take the following actions:
- Oversee the medication use
- Monitor body-tolerance levels
- Use the lowest dosage possible
- Exclusively write all prescriptions
- Periodically wean the patient off the meds
There is a risk of under-medicating a former drug addict, which can lead the body to demand more pain relief in a way that mimics an addiction. The technical term is “pseudo-addiction,” but it runs a huge risk of causing a relapse. For this reason and others, the ideal situation for any Seattle resident is to treat pain through non-addictive methods.
Non-Addictive Pain Management
The type of non-addictive pain management depends on the particular ailment, but there are numerous options available to Seattle residents, such as the following methods:
- Acupressure and acupuncture
- Heat and cold applications
- Chiropractic treatment
- Massage and physical therapy
- Hydrotherapy and yoga
- Targeted exercise and conditioning
- Stabilizers like braces, splints and casts
- Hypnosis or self-hypnosis
- Psychological therapies like meditation and relaxation exercises
- Treating anxiety, stress, irrational thinking and other self-defeating moods
- A local anesthesia applied through a steroid injection for more serious conditions
- Doctor-supervised systemic medication, often with non-narcotic pain relievers
If pain medication is necessary, a relapse plan outlines the actions Seattle residents can take if a dependency returns. It is essentially a written commitment to get help, and addiction specialists highly recommend them.
Treating Pain and Addiction
Proper treatment helps people make it through detox as comfortably as possible, but detox alone rarely breaks an addiction. Effective treatment uses an integrated approach to address all the problems, including pain management and unhealthy mood disorders. Professional treatment also helps in the following ways:
- Teach behavioral therapies to strengthen positive actions and discourage negative ones
- Look at lifestyle changes that can minimize pain and relapse
- Identify triggers for drug-use and how to avoid them
- Find alternative ways to provide pain relief that won’t hurt recovery
Treatment centers also provide aftercare support to monitor recovery, pain management and any other issues important to a person’s health. Seattle residents can recover if they have the right help.
Help for Seattle Drug Addicts with Chronic Pain
Have pain and addiction touched your life? We can help. Our specialists are available 24 hours a day to help any Seattle resident. Health insurance carriers often cover addiction treatment, and we can check your policy for coverage. Call our toll-free helpline today and let us help.