Find Local Treatment Options
Call 800-481-6320 to speak with an alcohol or drug abuse counselor.

Chronic Pain Management and Opiate Abuse: When to Consider Rehab Treatment

Opiates remain the standard of care for treating most any type of pain symptom, particularly in cases of chronic pain. With the range of opiate drugs on the market, a person may be exposed to any number of drug types depending on one’s pain symptoms respond to treatment.

Over time, the therapeutic effects of opiates tend to wane, at which point a person requires larger doses or a new type of drug altogether. These developments warrant cause for concern as opiates carry a high potential for abuse and addiction, especially when used on a long-term basis. For these reasons, understanding how opiates work can help you get needed rehab treatment in the event of a developing drug problem.

Chronic Pain

Acute injuries, chronic medical conditions, such as cancer and chronic ailments such as back pain may all require some form of pain treatment over extended time periods. In general, pain symptoms lasting for three months or longer are considered chronic in nature.

According to the U. S. National Library of Medicine, chronic pain can take two forms: nociceptive and neuropathic. Nociceptive pain results from actual tissue damage that stimulates pain receptors. Neuropathic pain develops out of damage to the body’s central nervous system functions. The type of pain at issue for the most part determines what type of opiate drug will work best.

How Do Opiates Work?

chronic pain and opiate abuse

Long-term opiate use can actually make pain symptoms worse.

Opiates work by blocking incoming pain signals from reaching the brain. Drugs commonly used to treat chronic pain symptoms include:

  • OxyContin
  • Lorset
  • Vicodin
  • Percocet
  • Fentanyl
  • Dilaudid

In effect, opiates stimulate neurotransmitter production in the brain, most notably dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine. These neurotransmitters act as the body’s own “feel good” chemicals with the brain’s cells secreting chemical supplies on an as-needed basis. With long-term opiate use, these interactions warp the brain’s chemical processes, which can lead to serious health complications over time.

When to Consider Rehab Treatment

The Opiate Abuse Cycle

With continued opiate use, the brain becomes less responsive to the drug’s effects. When this happens, a person will have to increase the dosage amount and/or dosage frequency in order to experience the pain-relieving effects of the drug. Over time, a vicious cycle takes shape as brain tolerance levels continue to rise in accordance with increased dosage amounts. The longer this cycle continues, the more damage done to the brain’s chemical system.

Increasing Pain Symptoms

After so many months or years of opiate use, the body’s central nervous system starts to undergo considerable damage. At this point, opiate effects can actually make pain symptoms worse. While your physician may opt to put you on a different type of pain medication, it’s not uncommon for a person to have developed an opiate addiction problem once this degree of damage is present.

Hidden Signs of Prescription Painkiller Addiction

Treatment Considerations

According to the Journal of Addiction Science & Clinical Practice, an estimated 20 to 24 percent of chronic pain sufferers engage in opiate abuse practices, whether knowingly or unknowingly. Considering how opiate abuse only works to worsen chronic pain symptoms, getting needed rehab treatment is essential to restoring a person’s overall health and well-being.

If you suspect you or someone you know struggles with chronic pain and opiate abuse, please don’t hesitate to call our toll-free helpline at 800-481-6320 for more information. Our phone counselors can also help you locate rehab treatment programs in your area.

More Rehab Centers Resources

Symptoms of Substance Abuse in Teens and Young Adults

symptom of substance abuse

In today’s high schools and colleges drug use is running rampant. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, recovery success is much when you catch the addiction early. Since many students at least try drugs, it becomes even more important be aware of the possibility of addiction. Although the majority of students are not….

Continue reading

What Happens after Drug Rehab?

Don't let relapse happen after drug rehab.

If you have a loved one who has recently completed drug rehab and you think that everything is “fixed” now, think again! While drug rehab is a very sobering experience and can be very beneficial at getting individuals back on track and aiming toward recovery the sobering truth is that many individuals will fail post drug….

Continue reading

Top 5 Signs You Need Prescription Drug Rehab 

drug rehab

Illicit drugs like crystal meth, cocaine, and heroin are not the only substances to which a person can become addicted. According to the NIDA, “Some medications have psychoactive (mind-altering) properties and, because of that, are sometimes abused––that is, taken for reasons or in ways or amounts not intended by a doctor, or taken by someone….

Continue reading

Methods of Treatment in Rehab for Anxiety

mental health rehab

Anxiety is a natural response to fear or a perceived threat, but, for millions of people, it is persistent and uncontrollable, interfering with daily routines, social functioning, and their ability to live a healthy and satisfying life. Methods of treatment in rehab for anxiety combine various types of counseling, psychotherapy interventions, and possibly medications to….

Continue reading

Benefits of Free Long Term Drug Rehab

addiction help

When you hear the phrase “free long term drug rehab” what comes to mind? Anybody with an addiction wants to overcome their problem as soon as possible. At the same time, these people realize the importance of getting the right help, now and in the future, to ensure a better life. There is a lot….

Continue reading

Why Do People Choose Long-term Treatment in a Rehab Center?

long-term treatment

Both long-term and short-term treatment options exist for nearly every type of rehab facility, and individuals in need of recovery help are asked to choose the program that is best for them. But why would anyone choose long-term treatment if they can go through a shorter program and recover more quickly? Long-term Treatment for Long-term….

Continue reading

How Local Detox Centers Can Get You On the Right Path

detox from drugs

Detox is often the first part of a long-term, effective treatment program for individuals who become addicted to drugs. While it isn’t always necessary (and it certainly isn’t the only component to addiction treatment by far), detox is used at the beginning of many rehab programs for a reason. In addition, patients who attend detox….

Continue reading

Health and Psychological Effects of Heroin Addiction

Heroin addiction can cause long-term and short-term problems.

Heroin addiction results in many major health effects and can affect the brain both physically and psychologically. The drug addiction comes with various long-term effects that cannot be reversed as well as many different short-term effects. The affects of heroin on the central nervous system are felt nearly immediately after heroin is smoked, snorted or….

Continue reading

Telltale Signs of Addiction and the Need for Help

Understanding the signs of addiction can save your life!

It may be simple to determine if an individual is addicted to drugs or alcohol once they have been using for many years and the addiction has progressed to such an advanced stage that they use daily, suffer withdrawal symptoms when they aren’t using and are clearly in trouble. Unfortunately, by this point addiction has….

Continue reading

5 Ways Eating Disorder Rehab Helps You Improve Your Body Image

eating disorder awareness

Eating Disorders and the Brain Eating disorders are extremely problematic to an individual and their family, especially when treatment is not received in time. Eating disorders normally stem from a person’s poor and distorted body image of their self. For example, people with anorexia typically believe they are overweight and need to lose weight, even….

Continue reading

Still can't find the help you are looking for?Get Started Now
Accepted Insurances / View the full list
For inquiries call800-481-6320

Accepted Insurances Does My Insurance
Cover This?

Pin It on Pinterest

Shares
Share This