wkbnThe campaign kicked off Wednesday (November 16) during a special town hall discussion, “27 Investigates: Heroin Crisis – National Problem, Local Solutions”.

I would like to thank WKBN for inviting me to participate in their town hall meeting and for allowing me to offer my opinions on possible solutions for the opioid crisis.  I found the meeting to be a real eye opener as I listened to the stories and got a chance to meet the people on the front line of dealing with this horrible disease.  The recreational drug use and drug culture that is consuming our younger generation these days is very scary and requires aggressive community action and awareness and I encourage everyone to be involved these days.

Not all people with opioid drug addiction problems stem from recreational drug use and many end up in this situation as a result of an injury in which they are prescribed opioid pain medications.

Chiropractic should be your first choice in dealing with an injury and not opioid pain medication.  The chiropractic profession has much more to offer in the drug free treatment and management of musculoskeletal pain.  Chiropractic physicians are direct access so you do not need a referral to go see one.  They can manage and accurately diagnose your condition, prescribe the most effective therapy plan or refer you to the appropriate medical specialist if need be.

Improvements in function with manipulative therapy, physiotherapies, corrective exercises and massage therapy are often times more effective for pain relief and ALWAYS have better long term outcomes than just taking pain medications.  I personally feel that avoiding exposure to opioid pain medications for injuries in the first place by utilizing chiropractic care can have a tremendous impact on today’s epidemic.

Chiropractic has preached a natural holistic approach to healthcare and has been successfully treating millions of people in pain for over 120 years.  There has been an overwhelming amount of scientific literature showing the effectiveness of spinal manipulation in the treatment of low back pain yet it is still one of the most under utilized therapies used today by the medical profession with very few medical doctors referring patients to chiropractors when they see them for back pain.

Chiropractic is also one of the most restricted therapies by work comp, Medicaid and health insurance companies in the state of Ohio. They all impose ridiculous limitations on treatment with no regard to treatment effectiveness.  Still today especially in the Ohio work comp system it is easier for a person with an injury to get pain medications and surgery than it is to receive adequate and proper chiropractic care. Even worse yet almost EVERY treatment request submitted to Ohio BWC for chronic pain is fought with denials yet they routinely approve opioid pain medications for the treatment of chronic pain and there is very little scientific literature that even supports the effective use of opioids in the treatment of chronic pain.

I look forward to continuing the discussion WKBN has started and contributing what resources I can to dealing with the epidemic.  I know for me personally after listening to the stories and speaking to those involved I am going to do my best to raise community awareness about the drug culture that has consumed our younger generation.