Facing any addiction is incredibly difficult. The realization that something in your life has begun to control you is a scary thing to accept. Finding help can also be daunting and confusing.
There are so many different types of treatment available today: counseling, rehab programs, 12 step meetings, medications, talk therapy, shock therapy, and many others. With all of these options, how can you determine which is right for you?
One treatment method you may want to consider is holistic therapy. Its methods are scientifically proven to be effective, and it is widely used across the world today.
So what makes holistic addiction treatment different from all the other options? Holistic therapy addresses addiction by treating your entire self. It seeks to find stability for your body, your mind, and your soul.
Addiction to drugs or alcohol is a growing concern for our nation today, and it is far more prevalent than you may realize. According to some studies, there are currently over 20 million Americans over the age of 12 that struggle with addiction. In the United States, roughly 100 people die every day from drug overdoses, and nearly 88,000 people die each year from alcohol.
How Addiction Affects You
Being addicted to drugs or alcohol is a very complicated matter. Once drugs or alcohol have taken over your life, you will find that there is no simple fix to make it better. That is because addiction affects so many different parts of your body, mind, behavior, and how you relate to the world around you.
Our brains are programmed to reward us for good, healthy behaviors. When we eat healthy food or exercise, our brain releases chemicals that make us feel good. In turn, these feel-good chemicals make us want to repeat the action. The same part of your brain helps you make good decisions and allows you to weigh out the consequences of an action.
However, when you introduce drugs or alcohol to the brain, the substance essentially hijacks this portion of your brain. You may begin taking drugs or alcohol because it brings a sense of pleasure, but over time, your brain begins to feel like it is not normal without the presence of those substances. You will find that you now have a need for the substance, rather than a desire. Your thoughts and focus become entirely based around whatever substance it is that you are addicted to.
You will start to notice that the things that were once important to you suddenly disappear because all you can think about is the substance of choice. Your hopes and dreams slowly fade away, close relationships become distant, work takes a back seat, and your behavior shifts. People may not even recognize you anymore because you have essentially become a different person. You don’t think the same way anymore. You don’t feel the same way anymore. You don’t even have the same beliefs that you had before.
Holistic Addiction Treatment
The greatest thing about holistic addiction treatment is that it does not simply treat one aspect of addiction. It seeks healing for the entire person: their mind, their physical body, and their spiritual soul.
Some treatment approaches focus on the physical body and ways to restore it to health. This might include medication or detox to cleanse the body of substances. Other treatment methods may focus more on patterns of thoughts and behaviors. These methods often treat any current addictions by exploring one’s past and working to change one’s future.
There are many different types of treatment available today, but what works for one person may not work for the next. Because each person is unique, no two addictions are quite the same. However, when you think about addiction and all the different parts of your world that it affects, it doesn’t quite make sense to only fix one part of yourself instead of focusing on your body, mind, and soul.
The Benefits of Holistic Treatment
Holistic treatment does not focus on just one aspect of addiction. It seeks to heal all parts as a whole. There is a mind-body-spirit connection that exists in all of us. When one of those is not functioning properly, the other two are affected. When treating something like addiction, you need to address all three to be effective. By only treating one part and neglecting the other two, you are not truly healing the person.
One of the biggest benefits of seeking holistic therapy is the fact that all aspects of your life will be addressed during recovery. You will be treated for not only the mental conditions that now exist, but also for the physical pain your body is going through, and the loss of spirituality you may feel.
Holistic Treatment Compliments Traditional Therapies
Another great benefit of holistic treatment is that it oftentimes compliments traditional treatment. Most programs that base their methods on a holistic approach will incorporate traditional treatment approaches into their program. This means that part of your holistic treatment experience will include traditional aspects of treatment as well.
You may have a treatment plan that includes many of the traditional methods for treating addiction, such as 12-step meetings, learning new life skills, and cognitive behavioral therapy. The benefit of holistic treatment is that it doesn’t stop with treating the mind. You will also receive treatment for your spiritual needs and the needs of your physical body.
Holistic Therapy Types
Some of the types of therapy you will receive may include:
- Massage therapy
- Tai Chi
- Spiritual therapy
- Art therapy
- Equine therapy
- Experiential therapy
- Life skills training
Why Holistic Treatment is the Best Option
Some people believe that addiction to drugs or alcohol is a choice, or that an addict is simply too weak to make better decisions for themselves. But this could not be further from the truth. Addiction is a disease that cannot be controlled by will power. Just like a diabetic cannot just wish for their blood sugar levels to be normal, an addict cannot simply wish their condition away. Once addiction has taken over, there are physical changes to a person’s body, rewiring of the person’s brain, and a complete replacement in a person’s mind of what is important in life.
Addiction to drugs or alcohol affects your entire life. Holistic therapy addresses substance abuse and the effects that it has on all areas of who you are. It treats your body and the damage that has been done to it. It treats your mind and helps you learn new behaviors and how to make better choices. It also restores your soul and helps your spirit feel balanced again.