We all have days where we deal with pain. Think back to when you pulled your back or pushed yourself a little too hard during a workout. The pain of any intensity can interfere with your daily schedule. Many of us take some time to recuperate from the pain. Unfortunately, a short recovery rest is not a reality for millions of Americans.
Chronic pain conditions force patients to experience constant or consistent pain. For these individuals, there is no “recovery day.” Living in pain is an unfortunate reality. Deepening on the severity of the pain one deals with could mean that you need to make some profound lifestyle changes. While certain conditions may control what you can do, you shouldn’t let them dictate your life.
Treating chronic pain
While many chronic pain conditions have no cure, this doesn’t mean patients are helpless. There are many techniques a patient can use to improve their condition. While some of these include lifestyle changes or alternative treatments, many individuals use medications to directly treat their symptoms.
Many different medications can treat chronic pain conditions. Sometimes, these pharmaceutical interventions target specific diseases and work by addressing abnormalities or imbalances. In other cases, patients will use painkillers. For extreme cases, a doctor may prescribe something a little more substantial.
Opioids specifically are a popular drug of choice. They are incredibly effective and popular. This fame doesn’t mean they are the best decision, though. Opioid addiction is a huge problem, and many popular narcotics have a dependency problem.
Dependency can become severe and lead to drug abuse. When this happens, there is a heightened risk for overdose, which can even be fatal. The threat of addiction deters many of those suffering from chronic conditions from seeking treatment. What many are starting to realize is that there is an emerging alternative.
Marijuana and treating chronic pain
For years, people saw marijuana to be nothing more than a street drug. While some remnants of this negative stigma attached to the substance, cannabis became more accessible in the last years. As people are realizing the wonders that medical marijuana offers, legislation movements push further ahead.
There is a lot of evidence demonstrating the pain–relieving properties of the drug. In a formal review published in 2015, researchers found connections between medical marijuana and the improvement of chronic pain conditions (in addition to several other medical and psychiatric problems).
Many celebrate these findings as marijuana doesn’t come with this increased risk of dependency and overdose. In the next couple of years, some speculate we may expect medical marijuana to replace opioids.
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