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doctor reviewing x-rays of a patient with chronic pain disorder

Chronic Pain and Pain Disorder

Chronic pain disorders can be overwhelming, frustrating and exhausting. Alternative treatments should always be fully explored before turning to opiate prescription medication. The combination of chronic pain and addiction is difficult to treat and is best done in an inpatient drug and alcohol addiction facility with medical services.

If you struggle with chronic pain and have become addicted to prescription drugs, a medically based comprehensive addiction treatment program can help you. Recovery Connection’s coordinators are experienced in addiction, drug detox and treatment. Many have dealt with chronic pain and understand what you are going through. Call now at 866-812-8231 and get the help you need and deserve.

What is Chronic Pain?

Pain is best described as the body’s signal that tissue damage has occurred or may be occurring. Pain can be acute, lasting for a shorter time, or chronic (long-lasting). Chronic pain is defined as pain that lasts beyond the healing of an injury, continues for a period of several months or longer, or occurs frequently for months on end.
To develop the most accurate diagnosis and effective treatment, healthcare professionals also classify pain based on its characteristics, its cause, and the psychological and somatic mechanisms that are involved in sustaining the pain. During this process, a person’s pain usually falls into several categories which are referred to as nociceptive, neuropathic and psychogenic.

There are many different types of pain, each one with its own classifications. The type of pain should be a determining factor in prescribing medication. Narcotics should be used as a last resort. Call Recovery Connection at 866-812-8231 and speak with a counselor about entering drug rehab that will help you find alternative ways to manage your chronic pain.

Types of Pain

  • Somatic Pain
    Somatic pain is generally caused by an injury to the skin, muscle, bone, joint or connective tissues. Deep somatic pain is usually experienced as either dull or aching and described as localized in one area. Somatic pain can often involve the inflammation of injured tissue. However, inflammation that does not disappear within a reasonable period of time can result in a chronic and painful disease.
    There are many different types of pain, each one with its own classifications. The type of pain should be a determining factor in prescribing medication. It should be noted: narcotics should be used as a last resort.
  • Nociceptive Pain:
    Nociceptive pain is believed to be caused by the ongoing activation of pain receptors in either the surface or deep tissues of the body. Two types of nociceptive pain have been identified:
  • Visceral Pain
    Visceral pain originates from an ongoing injury to an internal organ or the tissues that support the organ. When the injured tissue is a hollow structure of smooth muscle, such as the stomach, the pain is often diffuse (not in one spot) with painful cramping.
  • Neuropathic Pain:
    Neuropathic pain is believed to be caused by changes in the central nervous system that sustain pain even after an injury heals. In most cases, the injury that initiates the pain involves the peripheral nerves or the central nervous system itself. It can be associated with trauma or with many different types of disease.   Neuropathic pain is often described as a strange pain, with electricity running through the area or a burning sensation.
  • Psychogenic Pain:
    Chronic pain can be linked to a degree of emotional upheaval. Depression or anxiety, for example, can create situations that are difficult. Emotional distress may be a consequence of pain (an injured leg), or it may contribute to the pain itself (stomach pain from anxiety). Psychogenic pain usually results from a person’s psychological problems.

Opiate medications should always be the last resort for pain because they are rapidly addictive. Addiction ensures that harmful drug use continues with its resultant social, medical, legal and psychological consequences, even after the pain has been relieved. The only course of action to safely discontinue these pain medications is to enter a drug detox center supervised by medical doctors who can administer medications for the treatment of opiate addiction and withdrawal.

Detox in comfort. Call Recovery Connection at 866-812-8231 and get connected to medical detox programs that will be able to manage your needs.

The use of opioids and opiate medications should be the last option for a physician.

List of Commonly Prescribed Chronic Pain Medications

Do not discontinue the use of pain medications for chronic pain without first consulting your physician or contacting one of many addiction treatment centers specializing in the detox of prescription medications.

You may struggle with chronic pain but you do not have to be owned by painkillers. Get the best treatment for chronic pain and break the downward spiral of addiction. Call 866-812-8231 now and speak with a Recovery Connection treatment coordinator.

Drug and Alcohol Addiction and Chronic Pain Disorder

Opioid and opiate medications are the most readily prescribed drugs to treat chronic pain. Physiological addiction develops whether the medication is taken as prescribed or abused.

Addiction to opioid and opiate drugs is defined by the American Pain Society as a pattern of compulsive drug use characterized by a continued craving for an opiate/opioid and the need to use the drug for effects other than pain relief.

Addiction Is Characterized By:

  • Loss of control or compulsive drug use
  • Continual drug use in spite of adverse consequences
  • An obsession or preoccupation with obtaining and using the drug

As a person’s addiction progresses, life becomes more and more unmanageable. The body’s tolerance for the drug grows, requiring ever-increasing amounts to achieve the same effect. The acquisition and use of drugs is the addict’s number one priority. Relationships with loved ones deteriorate, work is missed and the person is less productive. The progression is defined by a noticeable decline in social activities.

In many cases, the person with chronic pain has some form of depression, as his or her quality of life continues to deteriorate. Many people fear that the only solution to relieve their chronic pain lies in taking opiates or medication for chronic pain treatment. When a patient with a chronic pain disorder is anxious or has difficulty sleeping, pain symptoms are likely to be aggravated.

Chronic Pain Disorders and Addiction Treatment

Quality addiction treatment centers provide intensive counseling and psychiatric services to help patients with medication management or substance dependence issues. Simultaneously providing these services is paramount to recovery from co-existing chronic pain and addiction. There are non-addictive prescription medications available that can help control chronic pain. These medications should be prescribed by a physician familiar with their use.

Patients who use opiates to treat chronic pain usually do so for a prolonged period of time. Because of this, drug dependency can easily develop. Abrupt discontinuation of opiate use will trigger opiate withdrawal symptoms. The good news is that under proper medical supervision, the symptoms associated with opiate withdrawal are manageable and can be greatly reduced.

Treatment of chronic pain and addiction, alcoholism and mental health problems needs to be provided in a controlled inpatient setting such as a drug rehab center that offers a team of medical and clinical specialists (rather than just counseling). In addition to medical and psychiatric care, the patient will be provided with the emotional support and counseling required for a full recovery.

Looking For Treatment?

Abruptly discontinuing the use of prescription medication or opiates for chronic pain disorder could be life threatening depending upon the substances that you are using. Always contact your treating physician or one of many addiction treatment centers before you make this decision. Recovery Connection is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to answer your questions at 866-812-8231.