Chiropractic Can Reduce Opioid Prescriptions
A recent study analyzed data on patients with lower back pain in New Hampshire, a state that has the second highest rate of opioid-related overdose deaths in the country. The study concluded that the likelihood of filling an opioid prescription was 55 percent lower among patients who visited a chiropractor as compared to patients who did not receive chiropractic treatment.
“When someone is experiencing pain and they choose to deal with it with any type of drug such as an opioid, the drug itself is not going to heal the body. In fact, it’s only going the mask or hide the pain symptoms from the patient,” said Chiropractor Dr. Joseph Graffeo.
Opioid Use Stems From Lasting Injuries, Not Necessarily from Addiction
Recent headlines about the opioids epidemic can paint people who use opioids as drug addicts seeking their next high. The reality is that many are people dealing with lasting injuries that cause them significant and chronic pain. Until recently, prescription medication – with its myriad side effects – seemed like the only solution and was the primary treatment plan prescribed by most doctors. In fact, it was reported more than 11 billion opioid pills (like Vicodin and Percocet) were prescribed in 2016.
“Only recently have we learned how under reported the risk of addiction actually is (and was),” continued Dr. Joseph. “So when one stopped taking the medication, not only would the pain return because the injury itself wasn’t treated, but users found they also had withdrawal symptoms.”
Chiropractic Reduces The Need for Opioids by Healing Underlying Injuries
What’s now being discovered is that natural treatments, like chiropractic, that work to heal the area of injury coupled with gradual reduction of opioid use can safely and effectively stop the addition.
As chiropractic care addresses the patient’s pain by naturally adjusting the bone, revitalizing muscle memory, or repositioning the spine to take pressure off nerves, opioid use can be decreased. A chiropractor can work with the patient’s primary care, or whomever prescribed the opioids, to gradually decrease the dosage, effectively reducing or preventing any significant withdrawal symptoms.
Chiropractic treatment can be a crucial part of your plan to get off opioids and get back to the life you love without chronic pain.
If you are interested in learning more about how chiropractic care can help you – whether you’re dealing with an injury, chronic pain or opioid use – call us for a courtesy consultation at 503-255-5522. Want to learn more about the medical science behind chiropractic? See our blog post Do Chiropractic Treatments Work?