I am a fan of John Oliver’s HBO show “Last Week Tonight”. His way of adding humor to current news and issues is very entertaining. Recently he did a piece about increased levels of addiction to prescription pain medications and the related increase in the numbers of people turning to heroin as an alternative when they can no longer get their medication legally.
Image Credit: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO).
The issue is not new. President Obama has been criticized for not being more aggressive in fighting this growing problem during his time in office. Additionally, our current presidential hopefuls have both commented on the problem in their bid for the White House.
The problem is already huge and growing fast. As stated on Oliver’s show, as of 2015 it’s estimated that 2.6 million people in the US are addicted to these types of drugs and nationwide over 30,000 deaths a year involve prescription opioids or heroin. They also brought up that an estimated 75% of current heroin users started with prescription opioid pain killers (like Oxycodone, Vicodin and Percocet). Because the pharmaceutical companies have been making so much money from the problem, it doesn’t look like it is going to end any time soon.
About a year ago, the CDC recommended that doctors utilize non-opioid medication for chronic pain. Many doctors voiced concern over the recommendation and on Oliver’s show, a pain management specialist was complaining that alternatives to these types of drugs are often not available.
It was at that point that the show became less entertaining than normally. As a practicing chiropractor, I know that chiropractic adjustments are about 80-85% effective for back and neck pain. There are no side effects from adjustments and you can’t become addicted to chiropractic care. Additionally, chiropractic services are available in every area of our country. So, I can’t understand why the medical community is so focused upon pushing these addictive drugs and why they believe that there are no available alternatives.
Chiropractic care is by far the best, most affordable and safest answer to chronic back and neck pain. Maybe it is time for the medical community, the drug companies, the media and even our politicians to pay better attention.
The Back Care Center is located in Dumont, NJ and we see patients from our surrounding towns including Bergenfield, Closter, Cresskill, Demarest, Dumont, Emerson, Englewood, Harrington Park, Haworth, New Milford, Ridgefield Park, Teaneck and Tenafly in Northern New Jersey. Call us at 201-387-7463 to schedule an appointment today.