Services > Chronic Pain and Medication

Chronic Pain and Medication Dependency Program

When faced with chronic pain, many individuals depend on prescribed medication to deal with their physical pain. For many, that dependency becomes an addiction that soon spirals out of control. Loma Linda University Behavioral Medicine Center has developed a specialized program to address the unique needs of a chronic pain patient by addressing all aspects of the individual's mind, body, and spirit so the individual can reclaim their life through hope, healing, and serenity.

What is chronic pain?

Each year tens of millions of Americans suffer from persistent pain known as chronic pain. Chronic pain can be very complex causing profound, negative lifestyle changes. Pain is an individual experience affected by mental, emotional, and environmental factors. Without relief, many individuals begin to alienate those around them and it often leads to drug/narcotic addiction. Individuals with chronic pain and medication dependency usually experience the following:

  • Pain as a focus of life
  • Feeling depressed and irritated
  • Dependence on narcotics or alcohol
  • Constant disappointment with healthcare professionals
  • Withdrawal and isolation
  • An attitude of, "I can't"
  • Loss of pleasure, job, or spouse
  • Dependence on others
  • Increased use of pain medication prescribed by their physician

Click here for a list of Red Flags or indicators that you may be using your pain medication in a manner that could eventually lead to problems.

Chronic Pain and Medication Dependency Program

Chemical Dependency Services provides a quality recovery program for adults eighteen years and older. The program has inpatient and outpatient services and is based upon a 12-step approach to recovery.

This specialty program focuses on the treatment of medication dependency in association with chronic pain. The program meets the physical, psychological, and spiritual needs that are unique to those with chronic pain. Program staff strive to restore hope while providing a supportive environment for recovery.

Program goals 

The Chronic Pain and Medication Dependency Program is dedicated to ending the patient's medication dependency. To accomplish this goal, the treatment team focuses on the whole person. Program staff help patients work with the following goals:

  • Refocus energies on function rather than limitations
  • Identify the negative emotions that reinforce pain
  • Lower pain level
  • Improve the quality of life
  • Decrease dependency on medical professionals
  • Re-establish meaning, purpose, and social relationships
  • Increase spirituality, hope, and wholeness


Chronic pain treatment begins with inpatient detoxification and rehabilitation. When the inpatient phase is completed, the patient continues daily outpatient treatment while living at home or in an alumni sober living home. Primary treatment includes:

  • Medical management of detox 
  • Acupuncture and acupressure
  • Stretching exercises
  • Relaxation exercises
  • Process group and education
  • Peer modeling
  • Electro medicine
  • Pain pill anonymous groups
  • Family participation
  • Pain education 

Program features

Spiritual care
Chemical dependency services recognizes spirituality as a key component in the recovery process. As a member of the treatment team, the chaplain provides individual care and groups to help patients process spiritual pain and grief issues.

Family care
Chronic pain, like chemical dependency, affects the entire family. Involvement in the program's family groups increases understanding of chronic pain and addiction. Family participation also influences the patient's recovery process. Education and process groups are available for family members during the week and on the weekends.

During the past two decades, acupuncture has received growing acceptance in the medical community to treat a variety of ailments. Acupuncture relieves pain and stress while conveying the message that relief does not need to come from a pill.

Alumni association and sober living homes
Chemical dependency services supports an independent, active alumni association which consists of individuals who have graduated from the program. Sober living homes, operated by the recovery alumni association, are available for outpatients participating in the chemical dependency program. These homes make it safe, convenient, and affordable for chronic pain patients to continue their daily treatment.

For more information

Intake calls: (909) 558-9275

Loma Linda University Behavioral Medicine Center
1710 Barton Road
Redlands, California 92373 

Loma Linda University Behavioral Medicine Center is JCAHO accredited and is a member of the CALNET facility network.