Addiction is far from simple, so it stands to reason that the recovery process would be complex, too. While easy to connect to impacts on the body, substance abuse also affects an individual’s mind and spiritual well-being. That makes holistic therapies for addiction recovery a viable supplement to the process.
Traditionally, the addiction recovery process has gone hand in hand with a 12-step program. Those in recovery often anticipate a strict set of rules. These programs are challenging but designed to lead to successful outcomes if followed correctly, and offer real benefits.
Regimented recovery programs are undoubtedly effective. However, they have long lacked a solid connection to the mental and spiritual aspects of the recovery process. To some in recovery, they may even feel rigid. That’s where holistic therapies for addiction recovery can make a big difference… especially when used in conjunction with a 12-step approach.
Why Holistic Therapies for Addiction Recovery Are Effective
Instead of viewing addiction recovery as a basic set of rules, holistic therapies for addiction recovery offer up a new perspective on the process. Holistic treatment has the power to refocus recovery on uniting the body, mind, and spirit.
Substance abuse disconnects the body from the mind and spirit in many ways. Often, the sole focus of a person using drugs becomes feeding the body’s cravings. That is the case for both alcohol and drug addiction. Feeding the addiction comes at the expense of spiritual or mental well-being.
Incorporating holistic therapies into the recovery process is an active step towards regaining that mind, body, and soul balance that’s been lost. Holistic therapies counteract the disassociation that substance abuse has created.
These therapies empower recovering individuals to find peace within. In the holistic recovery approach, recovering individuals are treated as whole beings.
Different Types of Holistic Therapies for Addiction Recovery
Addiction is a multi-faceted illness which makes it that much more critical for recovery options to be, as well. Holistic therapy options for recovery cover a range of possibilities. Each can be utilized as needed according to individual needs and preferences. In many cases, specialists pair holistic therapy with a 12-step program to provide recovery solutions that take every aspect of recovery into account.
Meditation in Addiction Treatment
In recent years, meditation has found a solid place in the realm of addiction recovery. Previously, addiction recovery specialists considered holistic therapies to be a fringe practice. These days, recovery centers integrate these practices into both inpatient and outpatient programs.
A NIH.gov1 study demonstrated that meditation plays a central role in preventing relapse in recovering individuals. Research shows meditation is beneficial when dealing with alcohol abuse.
There are many forms of meditation2 for recovering individuals to choose from. The choice alone offers a sense of freedom and customization to you on your recovery journey. That can be empowering and provide a confidence boost.
While meditation focuses on spiritual and emotional growth by integrating mindfulness into daily life, it’s also been shown to help regulate brain activity by reducing stress. When practiced daily, meditation teaches recovering individuals to focus on sensations in their body and to reflect on how this makes them feel, think and respond. Meditation guides encourage the individual to do so without judgment.
Yoga for Recovery
Yoga is a practice that’s been around for centuries. More recently, many centers have adopted yoga as a useful addition to the recovery process. The postures and stretching that are an integral part of yoga are designed to relieve stress and bring focus and balance to mind, spirit, and body. Yoga comes with a long list of benefits3 that can help those struggling with addiction on their road to recovery.
When paired with traditional recovery efforts, yoga as a stress reducer can help alleviate a potential relapse that might be provoked when stressful situations arise. Often, people turn to drugs or alcohol as a solution for dealing with difficult situations. The tools of yoga can replace that need and help a recovering individual find a more positive alternative.
Recovery That Goes Beyond the Basics
Holistic addiction treatment options go well beyond meditation and yoga. While these two types of holistic therapies continue to prove helpful in the recovery process, there are more opportunities out there. A few additional holistic therapy choices include:
- Art therapy
- Massage therapy
- Tai Chi
- Equine therapy
Whether the individual utilizes holistic practices alone or together, they pair nicely with traditional approaches to ensuring a healthy mind, body, and spirit.
Reach Out Today
At Silver Sands Recovery, we believe that everyone has the power to live a life they love and deserve. Recovery from substance abuse isn’t something you should ever have to face alone. That’s why we’re here to help.
Reach out today to chat with a specialist about our many holistic therapies for addiction recovery. We’re happy to explain how we integrate these treatments into the recovery process to help you feel whole again!
 Mindfulness meditation for alcohol relapse prevention: a feasibility pilot study – PubMed (nih.gov)
 Top Meditation Techniques to Fight Addiction (rtor.org)
 Using Yoga in Addiction Recovery (americanaddictioncenters.org)
About the author:
Lisa Waknin is the Founder and Director of Silver Sands Recovery, located in Prescott, Arizona. Lisa started Silver Sands Recovery after immersing herself in the addiction treatment world for several years to figure out what could be done differently to help her daughter and others like her to overcome addiction and stay sober. She believes in a hands-on treatment approach, which includes taking someone out of their environment, providing a 90-day program in a structured environment. During treatment, clients not only recover physically but also learn to live their life again. Lisa is a sought-after expert speaker for recovery support groups, charities, schools, communities, and companies wanting to educate themselves on the explosion of opiate and heroin abuse in our country and the best way to understand, treat, and beat it.