Often, when people are struggling with certain types of pain, their doctor will put them on a type of opioid pain medication. This type of medicine is extremely effective at easing pain symptoms, but there are some things that you should know before you begin taking a medication like this one to treat your pain.
- You can become physically dependent on opioids. Even if you don’t take them incorrectly or take more than you are supposed to, the body can easily become dependent on them, so you should never take them for longer than prescribed. You should also talk to your doctor about stopping this pain medication if you feel that you are becoming physically dependent on it, or if you want to stop taking it.
- If it seems that your pain medication is no longer effective, you should see what your doctor can do and if he or she recommends a higher dosage. Do not take more than prescribed by your health care provider, as there is potential for overdose while taking this type of medicine.
- Opioid pain medication is illegal to have without a prescription. You should always keep a close eye on your pain medicine because it is very commonly abused. Pain medications can often be stolen. Also, never give them to anyone, no matter how much pain they say that they have.
- For long term pain, you may want to consider alternative types of therapy. Many people who struggle with long term pain have found that they can get excellent results in treating pain through exercise, physical therapy and even identifying the source of the pain and treating it.
Your doctor will let you know if your situation warrants long term use of an opioid pain medication, but if you are taking this type of pain medicine due to something like a broken bone, surgery or other type of painful event, then your doctor will likely work to wean you off of it.
If you have long term pain and want to consider alternatives, you should talk to your health care provider about the best way to stop taking your pain medication. It’s essential that you take your pain medicine as your doctor recommends, and do not ever take more than prescribed.