Chronic Pain ↓
Chronic pain generally persists for six months or more and continues after the expected cessation of the pain. Acute pain occurs in response to a specific, time-limited medical problem. Chronic pain tends to elicit severe depression as a result of long-term limitations and hopelessness. It is important to remember that one can become physically dependent upon a drug, but not addicted. Addiction is characterized by a loss of control over the substance or behavior, preoccupation with the substance or behaviors, and continued use despite emotional, physical, legal, or social consequences. A person with chronic pain may need to be withdrawn from medications in order to proceed with the next step in the pain management protocol. However, medications can be abused and lead to addiction, which may necessitate further treatment.