While in recovery, an addict faces challenges beyond drug dependency. Holistic treatment can enable a person to cope better, heal faster and be healthier.
Holistic Treatment Can:
Physical exercise can have profound effects in addiction recovery. It releases endorphins, which makes the person feel a natural high. Good feelings can only help in the recovery process.
Research shows that exercise reduces stress and may curb stress-related cravings. A study showed that smokers had fewer withdrawal symptoms and only mild cravings for nicotine after they worked out at the gym.
Physical activity can also serve as a distraction. When you run, jog or play sports, you’re probably not thinking about drugs or alcohol.
Yoga is about stretching exercises, relaxation and controlled breathing. It can also improve heart function and lower cholesterol.
According to Nikki Myers, a yoga and addiction recovery therapist, yoga and addiction recovery should go hand in hand. She founded Y12SR, which stands for Yoga of 12-Step Recovery, a program that combines addiction recovery with the healing benefits of yoga. Myers believes that the mind and body are connected. She stresses focusing on both to achieve recovery.
Meditation is useful in addiction recovery because it slows down, or clears, the thoughts racing through your mind. It brings the person to a state of relaxation. Some people meditate in silence and use specific postures or breathing techniques. Others chant or play music.
Vipassana is a kind of meditation that involves “watching” what your mind and body are doing. For example, it encourages you to concentrate on your breathing without trying to control it. Vipassana promotes the welcoming of addiction-related thoughts without judgment or reaction. With practice, this meditation may help you acknowledge and then release drug and alcohol cravings.
How about doing meditative yoga? This would be extra beneficial. With either of these holistic exercises, you’re already in a relaxed state, so you might as well try combining both.
Lakeview Health provides yoga classes, physical activities and meditation groups. Call us today at 866.704.7692 to take advantage of our substance abuse treatment program with holistic opportunities.
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