Body in Balance: 10 Holistic Treatment Alternatives for Addiction

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According to statistics from 2013, almost 23 million Americans needed addiction treatment. However, only 2.5 million of those people actually went to a facility and got the treatment they needed. 

There are many reasons people might avoid going to a treatment center. There can be a stigma associated with checking in. People may have false ideas about what a treatment center is like, or what one can do.

Sometimes, the cost or time these centers take can also hinder people from checking into treatment. And while there’s no good substitute for visiting a treatment center, some people can find success with a holistic treatment in the meantime.

Which rehab alternatives are available to people struggling with addiction? Let’s take a look at some of the most popular ones and how they might work to combat addiction.

1. Dietary Changes

“Holistic” means looking at the situation, or the person, as a whole. An important part of holistic addiction treatment often is making changes to the diet.

Addiction tends to make people’s diets suffer. When someone’s regularly intoxicated, they might forget to eat, and they certainly won’t be focused on choosing healthy foods. 

A more nutritional diet can’t fix an addiction on its own. But it can help provide the body with what it needs to make recovery from the addiction easier.

2. Yoga

Yoga has many different therapeutic benefits, and it can also help someone fend off addiction.

In addition to making the body stronger, yoga has mental benefits too. It helps people remain calm and focused on healing. It can provide an easy way to delve into dark mental areas, such as past traumas, that might be playing a role in the addiction.

Studies actually suggest that yoga helps fight addiction by interacting with the brain in ways that minimize depression and stress. By targeting the negativity that can cause addiction, yoga makes recovery much easier for many people.

3. Neurofeedback

Unlike dietary changes and yoga, you can’t do neurofeedback at home. But it can also help people with natural drug detox goals.

For neurofeedback, electroencephalography (EEG) sensors get attached to the patient’s head. These sensors monitor brain activity and show the brain waves on a computer as they happen.

As the person changes their thought patterns, they can actually see the brain waves change. This allows people to really see the results of their mental efforts.

For example, someone feeling stressed might focus on becoming calmer during a neurofeedback session. Thanks to the EEG sensors, they’d actually get to see the results of their efforts, and how well their tactics are working.

4. Meditation

Meditation also helps with the mental exercises that are often needed to break free from addiction.

The more calm, clearheaded, and centered someone can be, the better their chances of making a full recovery are. Of course, most people don’t start the recovery path with this level of mental balance. But meditation can help them get there.

For those new to the practice, guided meditation sessions can help make meditation approachable. Although it’s hard at first, over time, a regular meditation habit can become an incredibly effective part of addiction treatment.

5. Exercise

In addition to yoga, more traditional forms of exercise can also help people who are in recovery.

Exercise is another great way to lessen the factors that cause addiction. For example, science shows that addiction helps reduce depression, and creates good feelings in the body and brain. For some people, those good feelings can start to replace intoxication.

Instead of the desire to get high or drunk, people may eventually desire the “high” they feel from exercise instead. Exercise also takes time and energy. By focusing on exercising, people may no longer have the energy and boredom they used to pour into using substances.

Finally, exercise can also reduce stress. This gives people a new coping mechanism that doesn’t involve using any substances.

6. Acupuncture

The reasons acupuncture works for some people still aren’t fully understood. However, it seems that acupuncture often helps people navigate the physical challenges of detox. It can also reduce negative mental effects, such as anxiety.

Acupuncture uses incredibly thin needles to stimulate certain points on the body for specific results. This type of traditional medicine doesn’t have the same scientific backing as other methods on this list. However, many people claim that it’s helped them get through addiction.

7. Counseling

Talking to a professional counselor can help people address the reasons they became addicted in the first place.

Many times, the factors that cause addiction actually come from childhood or early adulthood. There might be unaddressed insecurities, traumas, or other issues. Addiction is a symptom, not a cause, of many problems.

Counseling helps treat the cause, so people can get rid of their addictions once and for all. Some counselors also offer medication-assisted treatment (MAT). 

MAT combines counseling with medication to help treat the addiction from all angles. In a program like MAT for Recovery from Addiction, addicts work with a counselor to tackle the problem. They can take the medications they’re prescribed for as long as they need to, making this method much more approachable. 

8. Art Therapy

For some people, creative therapeutic outlets offer just what they need to break free from addiction.

This type of therapy can include visual art, gardening, music, dance, or countless other creative pursuits. Some treatment methods might even use pet therapy or equine therapy. There’s no shortage of interesting therapy methods to investigate, and many have shown impressive results.

Give Holistic Treatment a Try Today

Holistic treatment doesn’t mean unscientific or unprofessional. It simply means a type of treatment that takes the whole person into account.

For many people, a few of these treatment methods combined will get the best results. And although many of these methods can work at home, it’s always best to work with a professional or a rehab center to make sure you have the right approach.

Sometimes, people only decide to seek treatment after they’ve hit rock bottom. If you or a loved one need a DUI defense attorney following a poor decision made under addiction, be sure to read this post

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