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john65pennington's avatar

Is it true that if you are in pain, the pain medicine is not addictive?

Asked by john65pennington (29258points) August 9th, 2011

I read this article in a magazine at a doctor’s office. This was a long time ago and some of this article is fuzzy to me. Anyway, here is the question: is it true that if a human being is in pain, that taking pain medicine for the pain, will not make that person addicted?

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21 Answers

Neizvestnaya's avatar

That’s silly.

King_Pariah's avatar

No, it’s not true, it is still very possible to become addicted to pain killers when in pain. If anything it may be even easier as you can “justify” taking that med for any pain, tolerable or not.

Mariah's avatar

Not true.

Maybe the article you’re remembering said the chances of addiction were much lower if you’re taking the medication for valid reasons (pain) as prescribed by a doctor?

Judi's avatar

Are you sure it wasn’t an article talking about pain medications for hospice care? They used to worry about medications being addictive when someone was dieing. There was a lot of outcry and attitudes have changed and medication is given out liberally to those in hospice care now.

El_Cadejo's avatar

As others have said, definitely not true. I was proscribed the highest strength percs for my back after my car accident but stopped taking them and decided to just try and cope with the pain because I felt an addiction forming.

If anything id say it is easier to get addicted when in pain. Its because they relieve the pain fairly well but when it wears off you feel like you’re in twice the amount of pain you were before so down the hatch with another…and another….and another…

Donald_Trump's avatar

Absolutely untrue. And the sooner you are relieved of your pain and quit the pain meds, the easier it will be to beat the addiction.

Oxycontins are the very best pain pills, and yet the most addictive meds with the worst withdrawal symptoms.

What is true is that the more pain “meds” you take when not in physical pain, the higher you raise your threshold to pain meds and the more pain meds you will require when you do someday become seriously injured.

marinelife's avatar

Unfortunately, you can still become addicted even though you are in pain.

tedibear's avatar

Not true for me. I came very close to being hooked on Vicodin after my foot surgery. Luckily, I recognized what was happening and stopped taking it.

everephebe's avatar

Pain meds still feel nice after the pain is gone… See where I am going?
I have pain issues and I choose not to constantly take meds for several reasons, one of them being I don’t want to get hooked earlier than necessary.

YoBob's avatar

Absolutely not true.

In fact, I believe it highly likely that a huge percentage of those who become (inadvertently) addicted to prescription pain medication became that way while taking the medication because they were in pain.

JLeslie's avatar


But, taking meds for pain to treat pain usually does not turn into an addiction if it is short term. When it does, some of the time the person continues taking meds when they are not in physical pain anymore at all. They are taking it to feel normal, because withdrawal sucks. Many people do wind up addicted when they take medication for long term pain.

Recently there has been a big movement to treat pain. Pain is now a specialty. There has been an outcry for doctors to be more concerned about a patient’s pain, and a push to not worry about addiction, again for short term pain relief, and also in cases where the patient is unable to function because of their pain. I think maybe the article was probably arguing for treating pain, not being afraid to take the drugs when you need them?

woodcutter's avatar

It’s going to happen. Those in chronic pain will be on pain meds until they die so it becomes an addiction that is lived with. The troubles start when they are used inappropriately.

Hibernate's avatar

Relying on pain meds will cause you to start being addictive even if you don’t see it in the beginning.

laineybug's avatar

That is absolutely untrue.

QueenOfNowhere's avatar

I’ve been in pain for 3 years now. I’ve been in pain everyday of my life. I take painkillers twice each day. 3 weeks ago my pain is gone and I haven’t taken since. Why would I, lol… It’s not addictive unless you take morfin everyday!

King_Pariah's avatar

@QueenOfNowhere it’s morphine not morfin (the spelling Nazi strikes again!)

faye's avatar

I take morphine everyday. Some days maybe 2, some days 4. I don’t get ‘high’ because the medication is working on pain. Maybe that’s what your article talked about. I am not taking more and more to get pain relief, I rest more. I’ll need them until I die sort of like my blood pressure pills.

woodcutter's avatar

There’s no way not to become….OK I’m going to be PC here…Dependent. There it’s out, I can do it. Means the same thing but anywho, when a Dr. prescribes such a med it’s done knowing all that beforehand. If it’s a broken bone, it’s going to hurt like the dickens and the proper pain mgmt will be given in limited amounts. The Doc already knows how long people will need to have it. If after that time the patent is wanting more it’s going to raise an eyebrow on ol’ Doc. No you don’t get more.

Someone is dealing with a chronic situation the Doc knows his patient is going to be dependent or addicted but the recreational aspect is nil. The addiction part is really the least of their worries by then.

QueenOfNowhere's avatar

@King_Pariah Haha!! Sophia Sofia its the same thing :p

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