I must warn you that this blog is a bit of a rant. And it stems from my frustration about the opioid epidemic which continues to take 10’s of thousands of lives every year. There is plenty of blame to go around, but there are also viable, real solutions that do not involve drugs. So, after I rant and rave, I still have hope.
The opioid crisis is a devastating epidemic. It costs lives, destroys families and costs us all a lot of money. And the vast majority of addiction stems from the legal prescribing of these powerful drugs by the medical profession. In fact, 8 out of 10 people were first prescribed these potent pain pills by their medical doctor. And yet I have not yet heard one single “I’m sorry”. Instead, the medical world seems to blame the patients who followed the advice of their MD, became addicted, and then switched to illegal drugs in desperation. This is what addicts do. Pain pills are prescribed far too freely in this country. And doctors are supposed to know better and have our best interests at heart. The pharmaceutical companies have also played a huge role in this killer epidemic. They have lied, falsified data and pushed these drugs on the vulnerable. They have insisted that they are safe, effective, and not addictive. And patients often demand and insist that “they must have something for the pain”. We all must bear some of the responsibility. In the U.S., we make up 4-5% of the world’s population, yet we take 75% of the world’s drugs. This is literally a prescription for disaster. We must address our insistence on instant gratification, the “take a pill” mentality for every single ailment. No one ever promised that we would live lives of no pain. We all must take personal responsibility and be pro-active about staying healthy with good nutrition, exercise, sleep, and a life-affirming attitude.
We did not even study the effects of opioids on chronic pain until 2018. This is unbelievable, prescribing these potent drugs, not knowing if they are safe or effective. The findings are that the receptors in the brain quickly adapt to the drugs and that more is needed. They simply stop working for pain control, and addiction has occurred. Researchers also found that NSAIDs (Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) are as effective or more so for chronic pain than opioids! NSAID’s are Ibuprofen, Advil, Aleve, Aspirin, etc. And there is something even better for pain than NSAID’s, it’s chiropractic adjustments.
There was a study done in the JMPT in January 2005 that found that chiropractic care is 5X more effective for pain relief than, NSAIDs. The benefits continued even 1 year after the chiropractic care was given. This is remarkable, but common knowledge to almost every chiropractor I know. The mechanism involved in the pain relief associated with chiropractic adjustments is explained in the journal “Pain” as long ago as Fall 1996. They describe how spinal adjustments stimulate the same receptors in the brain as opiates. It found that the pain reduction noted immediately after being adjusted is not primarily attributed to biochemistry/neurology changes at the adjusted joint, but rather are primarily attributed to activating the pain inhibitory control system. This explains how spinal adjusting can influence many of aspects of systemic physiology, including the brain, autonomic, and immune nervous system. These are long-lasting effects and explains why regular chiropractic patients are healthier: mentally, emotionally, and physically.
While we now understand how and why chiropractic adjustments are so effective for chronic and acute pain, what is even more important is how much effect they can have on your brain, autonomic nervous system, and immune system. That is why it is so important to have your spine checked. Now is a great time to have that spinal check-up. Your life and health will benefit!
Who do you know that could benefit from chiropractic care? Mention this blog for your complimentary consultation and exam ($75 value!) to see if chiropractic can help you!* Call us today at 512-346-3536 or request an appointment here.
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