Pain killers are overused and over-prescribed in the United States. It is at epidemic proportions. Worst case is the long term use of opioid drugs. This is covered in a report: A Nation in Pain: Focusing on U.S. Opioid Trends for Treatment of Short-Term and Longer-Term Pain.
36 million claims from 6.8 million insured Americans were reviewed from 2009 thur 2013. The patients were compared for short term use (30 days or less in a 1 year period) vs long term use (more than 30 days during a 1 year period). These patients were assessed for the number of prescriptions filled, the number of days per prescription and the dosage being prescribed.
These are some of the findings from this study:
- There was a 9.2% in number of people getting pain killers but there was an 8.4% increase in the number of prescriptions and number of days being used.
- Those using opioids for more than 30 days, 50% were continuing usage for over 3 years.
- Seniors are using Opioid pain killers the most but the biggest increase in usage occurred with adults between 20 and 44 years of age.
- 30% more women than make take Opioid medications. Although men are more likely to fill more prescriptions and at higher dosages.
- The highest concentrate of these pain killer users is in the Southeast US.
- Around 60% of these patients were taken multiple medications. The most common being anti-anxiety drugs. This combination is the most common leading to overdose deaths.
Studies like this are a concern in the US. Pain killers are highly addictive. They might provide temporary relief but
never correct the problem. The side effects are numerous: nausea, dizziness, drowsiness, headaches, increased risk of infections, osteoporosis, cataracts, constipation, weight gain, sleep problems, loss of sexual desire or ability, rash, liver damage, heartburn, ulcers, kidney problems, increased risk of heart attack and stroke, addiction and the list goes on and on. The scary thing is WebMD states, “All medicines have side effects. But many side effects can be managed so that you can still take the medicine.” GREAT… so the doctors can just push more medications to cover up symptoms of another and cause a snowball of prescribing medications. This calls into questions the true intent of doctors. Follow the money trail!
Our country is the most medicated of all developed countries. Out of 37 we have the worst rated health yet we take the most drugs and usage of surgery. To top that, we account for around 2% of the world’s population yet we take about 75% of the worlds prescribed drugs.
These studies and numbers are a huge concern for Americans in how we treat symptoms. Rather than masking symptoms with drugs that cause a myriad of side effects wouldn’t it make more sense to find the cause of the pain, disease or condition? The US would benefit by going way of natural treatments, prevention and wellness. This is exactly what chiropractic care is all about.
More studies are being done showing the benefits of chiropractic. A study about migraine headaches reviewed 21 clinical trials and concluded “Evidence suggests that chiropractic care, including spinal manipulation, improves migraine and cervicogenic headaches.” Another Palmer College of Chiropractic study: Positive Findings in Military Low-Back Pain, found that those that received chiropractic care along with their medical care reported significantly reduced low back pain compared to those that just received medical treatment.
Other studies show how chiropractic is effective in treatment of neck pain, sciatica, carpal tunnel syndrome, fibromyalgia, car accident injuries and many other conditions. Chiropractic is a safe, gentle and natural treatment that can benefit patients in pain. Additionally it doesn’t have negative side effects nor the risk of addiction unless the feeling of normalcy and relief is addictive! Pain killers are a ginormous problem in the United States and chiropractic is one form of treatment that can end this epidemic.
If you are looking for pain relief and would like to get your life back, contact Dr. Russell Brokstein. To find out more click here: Chiropractor in Freehold, NJ