5 Chronic Pain Issues in Drug Treatment Centers

When working with and helping addicts & alcoholics there are a variety of factors that come into consideration when deciding what approach is best for drug rehab.  One of the major factors is if a particular substance abuser is also dealing with co-occurring chronic pain it can be a complex and challenging process for clinicians, clients, and family.  It can cause frustration and prolong the suffering of the client. All complaints of pain must be taken serious and have proper evaluation. Pain can impair health, function, and quality of life. Here are some key points.

According to The American Society of Pain Management Nurses (ASPMN) position is that individuals with addictive disease and pain have the right to be treated with dignity, respect, and the same quality of pain assessment and management as all other individuals. (ASPMN Position statement on pain management in patients with addictive disease)
Research in addiction medicine reveals a strong association between stress and drug craving. The stress of unrelieved pain may contribute to relapse in the recovering client or increased drug use in patient who is actively using.
Persons with substance abuse disorders are less likely than others to receive effective pain treatment
Treatment of chronic pain at a drug treatment center should use a multidimensional approach including but not limited to, Cognitive Behavior therapy, ice, heat, stretching and exercise, TENS, and nonopioid analgesic medications like acetaminophen, NSAIDs, tricyclic antidepressants and anticonvulsants.
As a last resort the use of opioid medications, preferably long acting time release.


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Anger Management Tips

Anger management takes effort and commitment. If we have problems with anger we need to decide that we want to do something about it, and then get on a program to manage our anger. Depending on the causes of our anger and on how long we have been having anger problems, we might see results sooner or it may take longer.

Here are some suggestions to help you manage your anger more successfully. What follows is a checklist of things you should incorporate into your anger management program in order to achieve maximum effectiveness.

Exercise. It’s important for everyone to exercise regularly; at least three times per week. Exercise is not a luxury or something we should even consider an option to not do. It’s really as basic as nutrition; we simply need food in order to survive. Similarly we simply need exercise if we hope to function at any kind of normal human level. Exercise moves our blood and our energy, it vitalizes our organs, feeds our brain, and releases stress. Anger management problems are exacerbated by stuck energy, and exercise is a superlative means of moving our energy.
Write in an anger journal. An important stage of managing our anger problems is to become more familiar with our anger. By keeping an anger journal we gradually learn to see our anger more clearly, which in turn helps us to change the patterns that are causing us to have so much anger.
Learn to slow down the pace of your life. Always being busy keeps our stress levels high, and we have little room in our mind to gain insight and relief with our anger management issues. Taking time to relax every day allows us to drop down into the present moment where we more easily find peace and clarity of mind to unwind our anger.
Practice being kind to others. When we are angry it is partly due to being too oriented on our selves and not concerned with the welfare of other people. Practicing kindness and compassion helps us to turn the light of our awareness outwards, which softens up our angry shell, and also brings more joy into our life.
Speak with a councillor. Talking about your anger problems can give you support and understanding for your anger management process. It’s not an easy journey struggling with anger, and talking with someone can provide you with support and encouragement.
I publish a website called Wisdom Anger Management to help people with anger management problems. The site uses a mindfulness approach to anger. Anger is a normal emotion that everyone experiences, but because we are uncomfortable experiencing our emotions we avoid experiencing them. This causes problems because our emotional energy becomes blocked. Mindfulness helps us to get back in touch with our emotional content so we can allow it to process naturally.
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