Living With Pain Relievers is Not Entirely Pain-Free
Do you find yourself dependent upon pain relievers to perform daily tasks?
Pain Reliever Dependency
A specific cause can generally be identified for acute pain that begins suddenly. This can be the result of a fall, assault, sports injury or surgery. In such cases, opioid pain relievers may be prescribed until the injury heals or pain subsides.
Chronic pain, with or without an identifiable origin, lasts at least 3 to 12 months, depending upon the medical institution. Untreated chronic pain may lead to dangerous physical and emotional consequences. Long-term over-the-counter NSAIDs can cause stomach, liver and/or kidney damage. Long-term opioid use is associated with even more physical harm.
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Short-Term Side Effects of Opioid Use
- Respiratory depression (trouble breathing)
Recognize steps leading to drug abuse. What begins as a legitimate prescription for pain relief often escalates to using more than what is prescribed. It may branch out to stronger illegal substance. Increasing your prescription can result in a harmful overdose. Too many opioids may cause breathing to slow and stop. Overdoses can be nonfatal or they can result in death. Pain rehabilitation services are usually nearby. In an emergency, dial 911 in North America.
Opioid Overdose Emotional and Neurological Side Effects
- Experiencing Paranoia. It is not uncommon for people to report overwhelming feelings of paranoia while addicted to drugs. Buying and using illegal substances is enough to instill the feeling in users.
- Feeling Anxious. Addicts rely on drugs to feel good (and to avoid unpleasant withdrawal symptoms). They then feel anxious as they wait for their next dose. This anxiety makes it difficult to stay focused and can cause problems in every aspect of life.
- Suffering from Depression. Depression (among other mental health issues) is widely known to be risk factor of drug addiction. When combined with feelings of guilt or shame, it’s easy for a clinically-diagnosable case of depression to emerge.
Both therapeutic and chronic uses of opioids compromise the immune system.
Do you find yourself dependent upon pain relievers to perform daily tasks? If so, ask your primary physician for a referral to a pain management team. The interdisciplinary team includes medical practitioners, pharmacists, clinical psychologists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, massage therapists, mental health specialists, physician assistants, nurses and sometimes pharmacists.
Chronic pain treatment remedies combine pharmacological measures, interventional procedures, physical therapy, physical exercise, application of ice and/or heat, and psychological measures, such as biofeedback and cognitive behavioral therapy.
- Opioids. clevelandclinic.org
- Painkiller Side Effects on the Body. cyclesofchangerecovery.com
- Effects of opioids on the immune system. Roy S1, Loh HH. Neurochem Res. 1996 Nov;21(11):1375-86. nih.gov
- Opioids and immune modulation: more questions than answers. academic.oup.com
- Pain management. wikipedia.org