Have you suffered from an injury or accident that has left you in pain 90% of the time? Do you depend on drugs like oxycodone or hydrocodone just to make it through your day? Have you ever found yourself anxiously watching the clock, counting down the minutes until it’s time for your next dosage? If you answered yes to any (or all) of these questions, it’s possible you’re on the brink of an opioids problem. Know that this is not a place you want to be, but that you are also not alone in the situation.
Drugabuse.gov states “The misuse of and addiction to opioids—including prescription pain relievers, heroin, and synthetic opioids such as fentanyl—is a serious national crisis that affects public health as well as social and economic welfare.”
You might be wondering how these drugs are affecting your long-term health and with good reason! Opioid dependence can be a deadly situation. The good news is that you can kick your dependence on opioid drugs without ending up trapped by debilitating pain, thanks to the solutions provided by physical therapy. Contact Magnolia Physical Therapy today to get started on this healthy, drug-free approach to pain management.
What are opioids?
People often confuse opioids with common over-the-counter medications. Opioids are strong painkillers that are often prescribed to offset the effect of severe chronic pain. Traditionally, they are derived from substances in the poppy plant. Morphine, oxycodone, codeine, and hydrocodone are opioids that can relieve pain where other drugs fail.
It is common for doctors to prescribe these to patients dealing with pain due to cancer, acute injuries, and neurological or musculoskeletal pain. Subsequently, they can also produce feelings of euphoria, which in turn makes them substances that are extremely abused and addictive in both legal and illegal forms(such as heroin).
Opioids prevent the receptors in the brain from receiving pain signals by attaching to opioid receptors in the brain and other structures of the body, Simultaneously, the opioids trigger the release of large amounts of dopamine, a substance that gives a feeling of pleasure.
Although opioids provide temporary relief from pain, it’s absolutely imperative that you realize they are not a permanent solution to your problem and pose many health risks.
Why are opioids so dangerous?
Plain and simple, opioids do more harm than good. The issue is that people become addicted to opioids because of the euphoric highs they experience while using them.
These drugs are so effective at seemingly “getting rid of” the pain, but unfortunately, the painkilling and pleasurable benefits of opioids come at a terrifying price.
As a result of long-term opioid usage, the body builds up a tolerance to the drugs and then will require larger doses in order to achieve the same effects. This ultimately leads to a very strong, very dangerous level of addiction.
It’s no surprise that more than 11 million Americans abuse opioids. Sadly, escalating tolerance levels in opioid users can result in them taking a fatal dose. Two-thirds of all overdose deaths in the U.S. are related to some form of opioid, and the numbers don’t seem to be going down any time soon.
How can physical therapy eliminate opioids?
Although it’s scary, opioid dependence can be avoided through more conservative and natural methods of pain relief. Physical therapy is an excellent and safe alternative to drugs.
Physical therapy might be for you if:
- You’re having issues with addiction and depression or physical side effects as a result of continued opioid usage (or you want to avoid these issues altogether!)
- You have a chronic, incurable pain condition that might otherwise you to use opioids for your entire life
- You have musculoskeletal or neuromuscular pain
- Treating the underlying cause of the pain, instead of simply numbing it, is your ultimate goal
An experienced physical therapist can prescribe you customized treatment methods that will help your joints move more freely, loosen tight muscles, reduce inflammation, build up muscle strength, and help decrease the effects of neurological problems (for example, herniated discs and pinched nerves).
Even if your pain cannot be eliminated entirely through physical therapy, treatment may still ease your symptoms enough so that you don’t have to take the maximum dosage of painkillers any longer. However, please be aware that if you’re currently dependent on opioids, your doctor must supervise any changes in dosage.
Call our clinic today for more information
Your life could change today. If you want to stop opioid dependency in its tracks, call Magnolia Physical Therapy to set up a time for a consultation with one of our physical therapists about drug-free pain management options. You’re in good hands with our skilled team of physical therapists who will do everything in their power to help you lead a pain-free, drug-free life.