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Opioid prescribing: tackling the ‘time bomb’ of long-term use and addiction

How to spot red flags, advise patients and help them find other ways to cope with chronic pain

How to spot red flags, advise patients on appropriate use and support them to find other ways to cope with chronic pain

  • Opioids are designed for short-term relief of pain or palliation, and the risk of addiction and harmful side effects can outweigh the benefits in long-term users
  • With evidence of overprescribing and a ‘time bomb’ of patients with addictions, new NICE guidance will clarify safe prescribing of drugs associated with dependence
  • Red flags for signs of opioid dependence, facts about opioids to consider when prescribing, and a case study of the use of mindfulness to manage chronic pain after addiction

More than one in ten of the adult population were prescribed powerful

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