Non-pharmacological treatment for pain is imperative for patients with dependency issues, or for those seeking a more natural approach to pain relief
According to the United States Department of Health and Human Services, more than 1 million Americans are receiving medication-assisted treatment, and an astonishing 81,000 deaths by drug overdose were reported in the United States from May 2019 to May 2020. A large percentage of these deaths involved opioids and fentanyl, and have resulted in a patient backlash in demands for non-pharmacological treatment for pain.
Patients want alternatives
A recent study published in JAMA Network Open used data collected from 2022 and 2019 to analyze and compare trends in pharmacological and non-pharmacologic treatment for pain. The study suggested that there is an upward prevalence of treatment that does not include pharmaceuticals.
Patients dealing with chronic pain were about 75% more likely to receive exclusive non-pharmacological pain treatment in 2019 than in 2011. And patients who had surgical pain in 2019 were more likely to receive non-drug treatments than in 2011.
The Joint Commission, which accredits health care systems in the United States, added chiropractic to its standard of pain management after recognizing its value for non-pharmacologic treatment for pain. Chiropractors treat more than 35 million Americans every year, and their treatment has been found to be more successful than prescription medication, over-the-counter drugs, massage, or yoga in back pain treatments.
And when it comes to opioids, chiropractic patients had a 64% lower chance of receiving a prescription for opioids than persons who did not use chiropractic services, according to a systemic review and meta-analysis published in Pain Medicine in 2020.
First options could bring lasting results
Chiropractic treatments can be in conjunction with treatments by other health care professionals such as surgeons or primary care physicians, offering non-drug options to treat pain. And it is becoming more clear to the public that chiropractic care is not a last option — in fact, it should be incorporated into pain management as soon as possible.
Chiropractors are likely to offer individual solutions instead of a broad-spectrum prescription medicine concept to treat pain. Patients may respond to drugs differently, or may be on other drugs that would interact unfavorably with pain medications. Although this is true in response to manipulation and adjustments, statistics show patients benefit from the first-option non-drug, non-invasive approach of chiropractic care.
Compassionate, non-addictive care
Non-pharmacological treatment for pain is imperative for patients with dependency issues, or for those seeking a more natural approach to pain relief.
In some cases, chiropractic care can offer immediate pain relief after adjustments. Relief may be longer lasting than the duration of a medication dosage, and treatments are given in a safe manner. By reducing prescription use that could affect the liver, heart, kidney, and other organs, the whole body feels the benefit of adjustments or manipulations, with no addictive side effects. Patients can immediately begin to heal from injury and continue on a path to wellness.