With so much talk about the opioid crisis and multiple warnings about the dangers of taking prescription pain medications, it’s normal to feel confused and even frightened about taking painkillers. Unfortunately, there is a lot of misinformation out there.
Here are the top 4 common myths about prescription painkillers (like oxycodone and hydrocodone) and what you should know before taking them.
Myth 1: The more you take, the better they work
More does not equal better. It’s true that in the short term — after a severe injury, for example — two pills may be more effective than one at relieving pain. But over time, taking too much backfires. You can develop a tolerance to the medication over time, and your pain may actually get worse.”
Myth 2: If you take them for a valid reason, you can’t get addicted
Even if you start taking a prescription pain medication for a legitimate reason, you run the risk of addiction. It has nothing to do with moral character and everything to do with the highly addictive nature of these drugs.
Myth 3: There are no long-term consequences
Addiction is NOT the only risk that comes with prescription pain medications. When you take them for extended periods of time, they also can harm your body’s endocrine system and throw your hormones out of balance.
Myth 4: Pain medication can permanently fix your pain
Pain medications simply mask your symptoms; they don’t treat the root cause of your pain. That’s why pain management providers focuse on making a diagnosis and addressing the cause of the pain whenever possible to help improve your function rather than just how you feel.
Are you moving better? Are you able to get back to work? These are important questions about function.
Pain patients should be proactive in doing OTHER things they need to do to feel better — like seeking professional treatment — rather than just taking medication. On their own, painkillers are not therapeutic and will NOT permanently eliminate pain.
If you are living in pain from migraines, head/neck pain or a TMJ disorder and are ready to take a step towards being pain free WITHOUT medication, contact us today to set up a FREE pain management consultation. A consultation at Pasadena Pain Management lasts approximately 2 hours and consists of a range of motion tests and dental examinations. After the consultation, we will better be able to diagnose the extent of treatment needed.