Before we actually get into the main body of this article, we should take a few minutes to rethink the meaning of the word ‘opioid’. Sure, you could use the word drugs, but that wouldn’t cover exactly what opioids are.
So, basically the term is pretty diverse. Opioids mean everything from your typical painkillers prescribed for back pain to illegal drugs smuggled from Afghanistan.
If we roll back a decade or two, people used drugs purely for the pleasure. It wasn’t for any medical reason, it was purely to get high. There are millions doing the same today as well, but a lot of addicts are actually hooked on stuff you could get from your local pharmacy. All you need is a doctor’s prescription and voila! You have an endless supply of those yummy painkillers.
But, there’s another aspect to this as well. There’s a small population out there that doesn’t really use opioids for fun or because they got addicted to them after some chronic pain. They get addicted to drugs because they don’t have a choice. They need to pop those painkillers every few hours or their pain becomes unbearable. And, when they’re taken off their painkillers, their withdrawal is much worse than any addict’s. So, if you’re also someone being forced to use pills for pain, then chiropractic care is just what you’re looking for.
Yes, opioids do the job pretty well. But, that does not mean that they’re a good way to get rid of pain. If you look at the numbers, they’re extremely alarming. According to a research by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 33,000 people died from opioid use in 2015 alone. A great portion of these deaths were caused by regular prescription drugs. And, on average, these prescription drugs that take the lives of 91 Americans every day.
The American College of Physicians has posted several guidelines recommending drug-free measures to counter pain. In their study, they recorded that the first line approach should be drug-free solutions. They suggest opioids only when absolutely nothing else is working. And, when they were asked what the most effective drug-free treatment was, their reply was chiropractic care.
Chiropractic care is absolutely game changing and the research is there. A recent study named The Association between Utilization of Chiropractic Services and Use of Prescription Opioids Among Patients With Low Back Pain recorded the relation between chiropractic care and prescription opioids in residents of New Hampshire suffering from back pain. This state was picked because medical data was easily accessible and the place is known to have a high percentage of opioids addiction. In 2015, the state had the second highest rate of ODs in the United States.
The next step was to categorize the people that used chiropractic care; the Recipients and the ones that didn’t, Non-Recipients. The study analyzed 13,384 subjects that were divided into these two groups. Then, the data was compiled for 2013-2014 and the numbers are pretty convincing.
The research concluded that New Hampshire residents between the ages of 18-99 suffering from back pain were 55% more likely to use chiropractic care instead of relying on opioid prescription.
Any way you think about it, opioids are not a good option. They cost a lot more monetarily, they take a toll on your mental and emotional health as well as worry the people around you. If you’re taking pills solely for pain management, give chiropractic care a shot. It has worked for millions of others and just maybe it will work for you.