Ask Dr. Tim: I have had chronic neck pain…

Ask Dr. Tim: I have had chronic neck pain…


I have had chronic neck pain for the past two years. I have been cleared medically but I have the pain every day. Even the heavy-duty opiate pain meds aren’t helping much anymore. Help.

Pain in the Neck

Dear Pain in the Neck:

Assuming you feel confortable with the thoroughness of your medical workup (i.e., no tumor), there may be a psychological and/or behavioral component to your pain. Chronic pain (over 6 months) is real. It is not “just in your head”. I would suggest two considerations: 1. Have you become addicted to the opiates? After two years of use, the answer is likely, yes. Because of the issue of “tolerance” it typically takes more and more medication to achieve the same desired effect. Oddly enough, your opiates may even make your experience of pain worse. 2. There are powerful body/emotional patterns, which entangle people when using opiates. I encourage you to find a psychologist that deals in pain management to work with your physicians and help you untangle this mess.

Dr. Tim

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