By Dr. Mercola
One in 4 Americans (and 1 in 3 millennials) reports knowing someone addicted to opioids,1 and recent statistics reveal driving under the influence of these and other drugs has become a serious problem, now causing more fatal car crashes than drunk driving.2
Many who go on to develop an addiction to opioids start out merely seeking relief from their aches and pains. Back pain is a leading cause of opioid use, but many also get hooked on these potent painkillers after receiving a prescription following a sports injury or a minor surgical procedure such as a tooth extraction.
Little did they know the painkiller they were taking would lead them down such a dark and troublesome path. For years, drug makers misled doctors and patients about the addictive nature of their narcotic painkillers. As it turns out, opioids are highly addictive and have become the No. 1 gateway drug to heroin.
While the rising death toll from opioid overdoses has received much-needed attention in the last couple of years, another related problem is now surfacing. Millions of people are driving under the influence of opioids, yet law enforcement has few reliable tools to identify drugged driving, or for measuring opioids and other drugs in someone suspected of driving under the influence.
Meditation and Mindfulness Training
Among volunteers who had never meditated before, those who attended four 20-minute classes to learn a meditation technique called focused attention (a form of mindfulness meditation) experienced significant pain relief — a 40 percent reduction in pain intensity and a 57 percent reduction in pain unpleasantness.24
K-Laser, Class 4 Laser Therapy
If you suffer pain from an injury, arthritis or other inflammation-based pain, I’d strongly encourage you to try K-Laser therapy. It can be an excellent choice for many painful conditions, including acute injuries. By addressing the underlying cause of the pain, you will no longer need to rely on painkillers.
K-Laser is a class 4 infrared laser therapy treatment that helps reduce pain, reduce inflammation and enhance tissue healing — both in hard and soft tissues, including muscles, ligaments or even bones. The infrared wavelengths used in the K-Laser allow for targeting specific areas of your body and can penetrate deeply into the body to reach areas such as your spine and hip.
Many studies have confirmed that chiropractic management is much safer and less expensive than allopathic medical treatments, especially when used for pain such as low back pain.
Qualified chiropractic, osteopathic and naturopathic physicians are reliable, as they have received extensive training in the management of musculoskeletal disorders during their course of graduate health care training, which lasts between four to six years. These health experts have comprehensive training in musculoskeletal management.
Research has discovered a “clear and robust” effect of acupuncture in the treatment of back, neck and shoulder pain, and osteoarthritis and headaches.
Physical therapy has been shown to be as good as surgery for painful conditions such as torn cartilage and arthritis.
Foundation training is an innovative method developed by Dr. Eric Goodman to treat his own chronic low back pain. It’s an excellent alternative to painkillers and surgery, as it actually addresses the cause of the problem.
A systematic review and meta-analysis published in the journal Pain Medicine included 60 high-quality and seven low-quality studies that looked into the use of massage for various types of pain, including muscle and bone pain, headaches, deep internal pain, fibromyalgia pain and spinal cord pain.25
The review revealed massage therapy relieves pain better than getting no treatment at all. When compared to other pain treatments like acupuncture and physical therapy, massage therapy still proved beneficial and had few side effects. In addition to relieving pain, massage therapy also improved anxiety and health-related quality of life.
Astaxanthin is one of the most effective fat-soluble antioxidants known. It has very potent anti-inflammatory properties and in many cases works far more effectively than anti-inflammatory drugs. Higher doses are typically required and you may need 8 milligrams (mg) or more per day to achieve this benefit.
This herb has potent anti-inflammatory activity and offers pain relief and stomach-settling properties. Fresh ginger works well steeped in boiling water as a tea or grated into vegetable juice.
In a study of osteoarthritis patients, those who added 200 mg of curcumin a day to their treatment plan had reduced pain and increased mobility. A past study also found that a turmeric extract composed of curcuminoids blocked inflammatory pathways, effectively preventing the overproduction of a protein that triggers swelling and pain.26
Also known as boswellin or “Indian frankincense,” this herb contains specific active anti-inflammatory ingredients.
This enzyme, found in pineapples, is a natural anti-inflammatory. It can be taken in supplement form but eating fresh pineapple, including some of the bromelain-rich stem, may also be helpful.
Cetyl Myristoleate (CMO)
This oil, found in fish and dairy butter, acts as a joint lubricant and anti-inflammatory. I have used this for myself to relieve ganglion cysts and carpal tunnel syndrome. I used a topical preparation for this.
Evening Primrose, Black Currant and Borage Oils
These contain the essential fatty acid gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), which is particularly useful for treating arthritic pain.
Also called capsaicin cream, this spice comes from dried hot peppers. It alleviates pain by depleting the body’s supply of substance P, a chemical component of nerve cells that transmits pain signals to your brain.
Methods such as hot and cold packs, aquatic therapy, yoga, various mind-body techniques and cognitive behavioral therapy27 can also result in astonishing pain relief without drugs.
Walking barefoot on the earth may also provide a certain measure of pain relief by combating inflammation.
Low-Dose Naltrexone (LDN)
Naltrexone is an opiate antagonist, originally developed in the early 1960s for the treatment of opioid addiction. When taken at very low doses (LDN, available only by prescription), it triggers endorphin production, which can boost your immune function and ease pain.
Sources and References
- 1, 14 Medicinenet.com May 22, 2017
- 2 MSN.com April 27, 2017
- 3, 7 Governors Highway Safety Association and the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility, “Drug-Impaired Driving” (PDF)
- 4 CNN April 28, 2017
- 5 US News April 27, 2017
- 6 Chicago Tribune April 26, 2017
- 8 Daily Wire August 10, 2016
- 9, 12 ASAM.org, Opioid Addiction 2016 Facts and Figures
- 10 CDC.gov, Prescribing Data
- 11 Addictions.com 10 Opiate Addiction Statistics
- 13 Drugabuse.gov, Opioids 2014
- 15 The Atlantic May 30, 2017
- 16 Newsweek May 29, 2017
- 17 CNN May 31, 2017
- 18 sports.yahoo.com May 29, 2017
- 19 WebMD October 20, 2015
- 20 Drugs.com Naproxen
- 21 medicalmarijuana.procon.org, Laws, Fees, and Possession Limits
- 22 Current Topics in Medicinal Chemistry 2011;11(9):1165-75
- 23 Washington Post October 12, 2016
- 24 J Neurosci. 2011 Apr 6;31(14):5540-8
- 25 Pain Medicine May 10, 2016
- 26 Arthritis & Rheumatism November 2006; 54(11): 3452–3464
- 27 CNN May 25, 2014
Source: Murray Rothbard from Lew Rockwell – Drugged Driving