Do Painful Conditions Cause Painkiller Addiction?

The recent and tragic passing of Minneapolis-born music legend, Prince, is believed to be linked with painkiller addiction. Sadly, this isn’t the only case whereby someone becomes over-reliant on painkillers and then overdoses, or experiences health complications, which lead to death.

While Prince’s death is still the subject of controversy and no one has every fact about it at this point (aside from the fact that he did have opiates in this system at the time of death, which was revealed via toxicology reports), statistics show that some people who live with painful conditions do get hooked on prescription medications which provide relief.

It’s rumored that Prince’s painful hip condition was the reason why he turned to prescription painkillers. He was a Jehovah’s Witness and they are not supposed to have blood transfusions, so he chose not to have a hip replacement operation. Again, all of this is speculation. However, it’s safe to say that painful conditions are linked with addiction and knowing the risks is vital.

Some Painkillers are Dangerous

codeine-addictionIn particular, opiate-based painkillers are dangerous when abused or when used for longer than they should be. This group includes codeine medications such as codeine phosphate, Co-Codamol and dihydrocodeine. Since you can buy codeine legally in the UK from licensed pharmacies.  This poses special risks even though there are plenty of hurdles to jump when buying online.  For example, this site checks IDs with credit agencies and has two prescribing pharmacists check the consultation in addition to a registered doctor.

Nonetheless many people believe that it is easier to lie to doctors and pharmacists when completing an online consultation form compared to face to face.  Doctors are well aware of the addictive nature of painkillers and they are very careful about what they prescribe, and that goes double when they are prescribing online. If something which is prescribed is known for being habit-forming, you’ll be warned about the risks of chemical dependency. You’ll be told how much medication to take, when to stop using it and so on.

By knowing the dangers of addiction, you’ll be able to check yourself and stay safe. The top tip is just to follow the rules. Don’t take more than you should, don’t share your medication with anyone else and don’t access illegal painkillers if you don’t have a repeat prescription.

We all want our pain to go away. Sometimes, experimenting with non-surgical and non-drug pain relief options is smart.  While some forms of pain are serious and do require prescription-strength drugs, even the most serious forms of pain may respond to alternative therapies, such as pain relief supplements, which are natural and safe, or massage or acupuncture (or all three).

By branching out and thinking about how to resolve pain without introducing the risk of addiction into your life, you’ll open yourself up to new possibilities. Medicinal cannabis may also be an option for some people.

Prescription painkillers, however addictive, have their place and purpose. However, they aren’t the only options.