How Effective Is Trazodone for Pain?

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  • Written By: Amy Hunter
  • Edited By: Andrew Jones
  • Last Modified Date: 06 February 2019
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The use of Trazodone for pain relief is an accepted practice among healthcare providers who treat chronic pain. Trazodone is an antidepressant, and is also used to treat symptoms of anxiety. It works by increasing the levels of serotonin in the brain.

Chronic pain has a negative impact on many areas of life, including social interaction, and physical and mental health. Without effective treatment, chronic pain can become so overwhelming that it masks other areas of the individual's life. There appears to be a circular pattern where individuals who suffer from depression have an increased risk of developing chronic pain, while those who experience chronic pain are more likely to develop depression.

Individuals who experience chronic pain need treatment for the issue causing pain, as well as psychological treatment. Adding trazodone for pain relief provides the benefit of boosting mood, along with treating pain. As many as 50 percent of individuals with chronic pain also experience depression. The extent of the pain has some effect on depression. Individuals whose mobility or independence are affected by pain are more likely to experience depression than individuals who are able to maitain their normal routine.


Chronic pain, from conditions such as arthritis, can be debilitating. Trazodone may be combined with other medications for best results. Not everyone can take trazodone. Anyone who suffers from heart or kidney disease, bipolar disorder, or a history of suicidal thoughts or drug abuse should avoid taking this medication.

Taking trazodone for pain may cause drowsiness and slow reaction times. These side effects worsen when combined with alcohol. Other side effects include changes in behavior, muscle rigidity, trouble sleeping, hyperactivity, panic attacks, and chest pains. An overdose of trazodone can cause vomiting, drowsiness, slowed breathing, and a pounding heart. When combined with sedatives, alcohol, or barbiturates, an overdose can be fatal.

Some people cannot take trazodone for their pain because of an allergy to the medicine. Symptoms of a trazodone allergy include hives, trouble breathing, and swelling in the throat, face, lips, or tongue. Anyone who experiences an allergic reaction to trazodone should contact their healthcare provider or local emergency room immediately.

It is important to take trazodone for pain in the exact manner it is prescribed. Some brand names of the drug should be taken on a full stomach, while others should be taken on an empty stomach. The medication should be taken according to the recommendation of a healthcare provider or pharmacist for best results. Do not stop taking trazodone suddenly, as this may cause withdrawal symptoms.


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Post 3

@fBoyle-- Trazodone is great for pain and anxiety. I've been taking it regularly for several months and I can say that it gave me my life back.

It's not a new medication but it works. I didn't have any noteworthy side effects. I think I had some drowsiness in the beginning and also lucid dreams, but it went away after a month.

I think this is a great medication for people who are experiencing a variety of psychological and physical symptoms associated with pain. It's a "treat-all" category drug when doctors are unsure where symptoms are stemming from.

Post 2

@fBoyle-- I was on it for a short while. I don't know if it helped with the pain because I was on another pain reliever at the same time. I was taking it more for a good night's sleep and it did help with that but I had to stop taking it because it gave me high blood pressure.

I don't think this is a very common side effect though because my doctor was very surprised about it.

Post 1

I've been prescribed trazodone for pain. I have chronic back pain due to injury. The pain doesn't let me sleep at night. My doctor said that this medication will help with both.

Anyone else on trazodone for pain and sleep problems? Does it work? Have you had any side effects?

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