Can I Deal with Chronic Pain without Taking Drugs?

One of the most sensitive topics of discussion in recovery is how to stay sober and deal with chronic pain. One opinion that people in recovery have leaned toward is that you are not being sober if you are taking anything mind-altering, which can include pain medications. The problem with this point of view is that not everyone has been to medical school or has complete knowledge of biology. On the other hand, being skeptical of certain medications is not wrong because when it comes to getting away with something, it takes one to know one. 

When someone suffers from chronic pain stemming from fibromyalgia, arthritis, back problems, migraines, or nerve damage, the main focus is to get them to feel as comfortable as possible to help them live life to the fullest. Sometimes this can mean taking prescription drugs because they are the only ones that will make a difference with the pain level. If someone is also recovering from drug and alcohol addiction, this could be a real conflict of interest. They did not get sober to throw away all the hard work they have done in their recovery only to relapse due to their chronic pain.

Be Truthful

Your real motive for what you are trying to achieve with your prescription will reveal more than you may even realize. If you are taking prescription drugs prescribed by a doctor for a legitimate ailment, you should run your intentions honestly by a therapist or a sponsor. Many people with a legitimate prescription for psychoactive drugs find themselves tempted to take them without knowing if that is the best solution for their co-occurring issues. By talking to a few people you trust before taking any mind-altering medications that can jeopardize your sobriety, you can save your sobriety much easier. 

Be Receptive

Even when you do not get the answer that you were secretly crossing your fingers for, your open-mindedness to see the whole equation is necessary. Using a prescription drug or anything mind-altering to numb pain may appear to be a free ride to get high but could ultimately lead you back to the despair of addiction. Doing the right thing can be overlooked due to cravings or urges that crop up. Listen to the message of recovery and authentically take care of yourself so that you can make the best decisions for longevity in sobriety and your life. 

Having to deal with chronic pain is no joke and should be checked out. As always, consult with your primary care doctor, therapist, and sponsor to gain clarity on what is best for your specific health mentally, physically, and spiritually. You must do what is in the best interest of your personal wellness. Investigate all your options and choose what is right for you based on what will give the longest life span so that you remain sober, grateful, and alive.


Valiant Living has an opportunity to show you the solution to cessation from drugs and alcohol and assist walking you through your chronic pain options. We offer outpatient and inpatient programs that use targeted evidence-based therapy as a solution to resolve the issues brought about by the insidiousness of addiction. Offering a full range of recovery and mental health services, we offer “Expanded Recovery” to enrich our clients’ lives and to provide long term support. With the power of recovery, clients can find a new lease on life. Call us today for more information at (303) 952-5035.