Why You Should Consider Alternative Addiction Treatment

alternative addiction treatment

In 2013, an estimate of 24.6 million Americans aged 12 and older used illicit drugs. Drug use has cost the United States an approximate of $181 billion annually. Excessive alcohol cost the nation approximately $235 billion.

You might be struggling with breaking the habit or you might know someone who is trying to quit. Are you intimidated by the traditional rehabilitation methods? Are you looking for a different means to break free?

Alternative addiction treatment is available but some options appear supplemental in nature. If the 12-step method doesn’t appeal to you, here are some reasons why you should check out these alternative treatments.

Addresses the Person as a Whole

Alternative cures for addiction offer a means of helping the patient in question. These address the other aspects of the person’s well-being. By doing this, the recovery process increases in potency.

The alternative treatments for addiction offer a variety of engagements to help develop a person. Art therapy can develop an avenue for expression. This is while encouraging and building self-esteem.

Physical exercises entice the mood while also bolstering physical health through fitness. This can curb the craving for substance use.

Pet therapy is another means to encourage the focus outside oneself, while reducing stress levels among other things. Gardening is also another form of therapy that gives the patient a sense of purpose while offering an avenue to nurture.

These various rehab alternatives aim to develop the following aspects of the patient:

  • physical
  • mental
  • emotional
  • spiritual

Developing these aspects increases chances for success in treatment. This also reduces the risk of relapse.

Offers a More Natural and Proactive Approach

Compared to other forms of rehabilitation treatment, these alternative methods encourage a natural means for the subject to recover from addiction. It encourages the body’s innate wisdom to heal on its own and overcome alcohol addiction in a natural way.

There is something about addiction that requires a certain degree of mindlessness. Shutting away what is occurring in the present.

Yoga, for example, invokes an increasing awareness and connection with the self while releasing pent-up emotions and hidden physical energy. This way, they become more aware of themselves and what is around them.

Methods like these teach people to respond to the stresses of life than to just react to it. Also, the goal is to tap into one’s inner strength to overcome addiction instead of feeling powerless in breaking free from the habit.

Alternative Addiction Treatment is Accessible

Traditional methods for rehabilitation are notably intimidating for some. The advantage of alternative rehab is that it is accessible for all. This way, the subject would not feel too enclosed and stifled by the whole process.

Furthermore, many of these methods can uncover underlying issues that normal talk therapy could not draw out. To note some examples, Adventure Therapy allows you to learn more about how you react to stressful situations. With it, you can gain insight on how maladaptive coping skills can contribute to substance addiction.

Another example would be with Art Therapy. Creating works of art is therapeutic. By working with your therapist, you can uncover and heal emotional wounds related to your addiction.

Teaches New Life Skills

The advantage of alternative addiction treatment is that it also arms the subject with new life skills. Let’s take a look at Gardening as one example. Also known as Horticulture Therapy, this method enables the subject in question to pursue productive goals while easing their senses and tension.

This method taps into the person’s preserving nature. With gardening, they gain a life-skill that becomes useful to not only themselves but to others as well. Therapeutic gardens are in practice since the 19th century and have expanded in its application to this day.

These kinds of alternative treatments aim to empower and aid the person to reintegrate himself back in society. This way, it ensures that they won’t regress into addiction, instead they push on and navigate successfully through life.

Offers a Way to Calm the Nervous System

The reason why some would turn to substance use is to calm their nerves. The effect tends to become addictive as it continues. With that said, these alternative methods are therapeutic and are a great means of catharsis.

Yoga, as an example noted before, offers an avenue to channel pent-up emotions and energy to soothe the sense. This enables a sense of both heightened awareness and calm, helping in making sound decisions.

Pet Therapy is also noted as having therapeutic effects. This is due to the calming nature that animals give out to humans. Spending quality time with pets can reduce stress levels, reduce anxiety and rejection, and so on.

Horticulture Therapy can lower cortisol levels, reducing aggression and even improve concentration. It allows to not only keep one person busy and productive, but it also soothes people from stress while making them productive.

Offers a Way to Embody Change

Alternative rehab does its wonders and enforces the evidence of a person’s desire to change. In this case, it is not addressed simply in a cognitive manner. As evident with the other methods mentioned, they engage on both the mind and the body.

With these methods, the change should show through action and not through thought alone. A number of the alternative methods mentioned as examples in this article employ not only a mental and cognitive standpoint but also invokes a change in habits and behavior that veers away from the object of addiction.

Don’t Hesitate to Get Help!

Alternative addiction treatment is still progressing and improving, finding new means of implementation to its utmost efficiency. While it is still of note that they work perfectly well in conjunction with other traditional methods, these rehab alternatives have potential to stand on its own.

Now, if you struggle with addiction and you want to break free from it and improve, don’t hesitate to get help. Feel free to contact us now and we can help you find a rehab center near you.

About the author

Dr. Michael Carlton, MD.

Leading addictionologist, Michael Carlton, M.D. has over 25 years of experience as a medical practitioner. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering and returned for his MD from the College of Medicine at the University of Arizona in 1990. He completed his dual residency in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics and his Fellowship in Toxicology at Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center and Phoenix Children’s Hospital.

He has published articles in the fields of toxicology and biomedicine, crafted articles for WebMD, and lectured to his peers on medication-assisted treatment. Dr. Carlton was a medical director of Community Bridges and medically supervised the medical detoxification of over 30,000 chemically dependent patients annually.

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