Dealing with Chronic Pain in Recovery

Dealing with Chronic Pain in Recovery

Oftentimes chronic pain can become a catalyst for substance abuse, as a person is looking to alleviate their discomfort. Therefore, when the time comes to begin addiction treatment and start recovering, it can become increasingly difficult to manage both chronic pain and the stress that comes with getting sober. This struggle often makes it challenging to both obtain and maintain sobriety during the addiction recovery.

Cause and Effect of Chronic Pain

Chronic pain can have many different causes, as well as create effects that can leave everlasting impressions on a person’s life. Some of the many causes of chronic pain can include:

  • Arthritis
  • Nerve damage
  • Recurring headaches
  • Diseases such as Multiple Sclerosis and cancer
  • Back pain

The presence of these causes of chronic pain can lead a person to experience effects that can impair their ability to function at a normal level, such as the following:

  • Having suicidal thoughts and tendencies
  • Experiencing symptoms of depression
  • Inability to sleep
  • Frustration and anger
  • Dependency on others

Both the causes and effects of chronic pain can lead to the development of a full blown addiction, as both the mind and body are suffering from pain and ache for relief.

Chronic Pain in Recovery

When in recovery, both the causes and effects of chronic pain can come to a head and make finding sobriety more challenging. Those who experience this kind of pain can run into more obstacles during their treatment than those who don’t, such as:

  • Increased potential for relapse – A user might find relapse justifiable if they are using to self-medicate their pain.
  • Inability to focus – When pain becomes too much to handle, a person is likely to have difficulty focusing on anything else. This means that they are less likely to participate in group and individual therapy and/or engage themselves in positive activity that can promote an overall sense of well-being. When the focus is taken off of recovery, obtaining sobriety becomes much more challenging.
  • Reluctance to use medication – While some people may find that using medication is the best and most effective way to handle their chronic pain, others might see it as a gateway back into a life filled with addiction. Therefore, they might be unwilling to take a doctor’s advice when it comes to a treatment plan that includes prescription medication. This can slow down the treatment process.

When the focus is taken off of treatment, a person is more likely to relapse, justify relapse, and grow reluctant to treatment plans that include medication. All of these factors can make getting sober an uphill battle.

Why Treatment is Necessary

If you have chronic pain and find yourself turning to drugs or alcohol to manage your pain it is important that you seek treatment. Continuing to use is only going to make your pain worse than if it were properly treated. When you receive professional help, you will learn how to control your addictive behaviors as well as get the pain management help you need.

Do You Need Help with Chronic Pain and Addiction?

Do not wait one more day. Call our toll-free, 24 hour helpline right now to get the support you need to make the best decision for your health. Please do not hesitate. Call us now.