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Non-Medication Options for Pain Management – Patient and Family Resources

Not all pain management requires the use of medication. Please see below for patient-focused information on evidence-based, non-pharmacological treatment options that can be considered in treating pain and where to locate provider.

Please note: The content in this toolkit is for your information. It is not intended to substitute for the medical expertise and advice of your health care provider(s). We encourage you to speak with your health care provider before making any decisions about treatment or care. The mention of any products, services, or therapies are informational and not necessarily endorsed by the makers of this toolkit.

  • Opioids are not recommended as the first-line or routine therapy for chronic pain.
  • Non-medication therapy and non-opioid medication therapy are preferred for chronic pain.
  • If opioids are used, they should be combined with non-medication therapy and non-opioid medication therapy, as appropriate.

Definitions:

  • Non-pharmacological therapies (non-medication treatments): Referring to therapies that do not involve drugs.
  • Non-opioid pharmacological treatments (medication treatments): Referring to non-opioid pain medications.

Non-Medication Treatment Options

Integrative medicine

  • Access information on integrative medicine –why you might consider it, how you choose an integrative medicine practitioner and if insurance covers it.

NIH/NCCIH: Complementary Health Approaches for Chronic Pain

  • Review a summary of the current scientific evidence about the complimentary health approaches most often used to treat chronic pain including fibromyalgia, headaches, low-back pain, etc.

Online Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)

  • Access information on a mindfulness-based stress reduction program.

Summary of Non-Medication Treatments

 

Non-Medication Treatments for Pain: Patient Table

  • This table contains information for patients on different non-medication pain management options.

Locate Providers Offering Non-Medication Treatments for Pain

 

Acupuncture

Locate a Licensed Acupuncture Clinic in Michigan

  • Find a Registered Acupuncturist (RAc) through the Michigan Association of Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine

Requirements of a Registered Acupuncturist

  • FAQs regarding professional standards required for a Registered Acupuncturist (RAc) in the state of Michigan.

Massage Therapy

Check if a massage therapy school is licensed by the State of Michigan

  • Massage therapy schools are licensed by the department’s Bureau of Corporations, Securities and Commercial Licensing.  

Locate a Massage Therapist

  • Search by city, state, or zip.

Complementary & Integrative Health Approaches

NIH/NCCIH: How To Find a Complementary Health Practitioner

  • Use this resource to help find a complementary health provider.

Credentialing, licensing, and education in complementary and integrative health

  • Learn about the differences in licensing requirements for complementary health practitioners as well as education and training and steps to take if you’re considering going to a complementary health practitioner.

6 Things to Know When Selecting a Complementary Health Practitioner

  • Use these tips to help you chose a complementary health provider.

Locate a practitioner from the Academy of Integrative Health & Medicine (AIHM) Member Community database

  • Search for a practitioner within the AIHM community database by primary profession, specialty areas of practice, and insurance accepted.

For more information on non-pharmacological treatment options, tailored toward providers: