The Anxiety & Depression Association of America cites anxiety disorders as one of the most common mental illnesses in the country. Anxiety impacts 40 million adults every year, which is almost 20 percent of the U.S. population.
Anxiety disorders range from a more generalized diagnosis to specific phobias. Commonly associated with anxiety of all types, many people also suffer from a physical illness of some kind as well. These also have a wide range but can include headaches, back aches and pain in other parts of the body. This pain is a symptom of a larger issue, but can require treatment that goes beyond what’s being done to address the specific disorder.
When it comes to opioid-induced anxiety, pain symptoms often match those experienced by individuals with other forms of anxiety, adding a physical component to symptoms like panic attacks and obsessions or compulsions. In addition to weaning yourself off the medication, chiropractic care can also provide multiple benefits.
Opioids and anxiety
Unfortunately, opioids can cause someone to experience anxiety even if they’re taking the medication exactly as their doctor prescribed. How long you take it and your dosage can impact risk, but you may experience symptoms the entire time you’re on the medication.
Anxiety can also happen as you are weaning yourself off your medication, continuing on for up to two weeks once you’ve completely stopped taking the medicine.
Whether you need a way to alleviate anxiety symptoms while you’re taking an opioid or need an opioid alternative to treat pain all together, a trip to the chiropractor may be able to help.
The benefits of chiropractic care for anxiety
Many symptoms tied to anxiety link to stress. If you have a panic attack, your body tightens up, your muscles strain. If you’re feeling afraid, many of the same physical responses occur. Over time, these physical reactions can lead to chronic pain and inflammation.
Visiting a chiropractor can help adjust the body so that it’s back in its ideal alignment (literally). Aligning the spine ensures your body works right, reducing pain that could be coming from one muscle group overcompensating for another.
Even better, many people experience a natural release of oxytocin and cortisol during an adjustment. These “happy hormones” can reduce the effects of stress, help your body relax and make you feel good. When you feel good, your overall mental state improves, possibly leading to less anxiety.
Chiropractic care can also help improve the quality of your sleep, allowing you to live healthier and potentially with less anxiety.
Anxiety treatment without side effects
Especially for those experiencing opioid-induced anxiety, having an option that doesn’t create even more side effects is always a plus. If your anxiety is a side effect of the medication you’re taking, chiropractic care can really make a positive change in your overall health.
Since chiropractic care uses the body’s natural ability to heal through simple adjustments, there are no additional medications required for effective results. After a chiropractic adjustment, the one side effect you may feel is a little muscle soreness, and that’s just temporary.
Many people will eventually even replace (or reduce) their opioid prescription with regular trips to the chiropractor to address their pain in a more holistic way.
Managing mental health and pain at the same time
Dealing with chronic pain is never easy, but treating it can get complicated. Opioids are only a temporary solution, masking the pain rather than treating the root cause. They’re also not the only solution, and taking that into account from the start can prove highly beneficial.
Talking with your doctor about your mental health as you consider the use of opioids can help determine whether you’re at risk to develop opioid-induced anxiety. If you’re concerned about the risk, try chiropractic care first for your pain, and you may not have to take medication at all.
If you’re already experiencing symptoms of opioid-induced anxiety, or have another form of anxiety or depression, chiropractic care may prove a fast-acting, helpful solution to the physical pain associated with anxiety symptoms.
In either case, talking with your doctor and going in for a consultation with a chiropractor can give you a lot of useful information to manage your care in the way that works best for you.
How to get chiropractic care for anxiety
If you’re ready to explore the benefits of chiropractic care for anxiety, you’ll need to find a chiropractor in your area. Relief Without Addiction can help. We focus on educating people on ways to receive holistic treatment for pain that doesn’t have to include medication. Use our robust database to find a chiropractor in your area today.