Did you know that non-medical treatments or holistic therapy plans are becoming more and more widely accepted and recommended by doctors as complementary treatments alongside medical programs for those battling with addictive behaviors?
Holistic therapies look at helping the person on a whole, focusing on all body, mind and spirit levels to treat emotional, physical and mental imbalances. Below are 10 now common therapies prescribed to assist an individual through the difficult process of recovery. The great thing about these non-medical treatments is that they focus on one person and their likes and strengths so each can be targeted to cater specifically to an individual's needs.
Art Therapy- Art therapy can take the forms of painting and drawing, sculpting, dance, acting, poetry or music. Art helps people express deep insights into what we sometimes can't express in words. It offers a safe place to communicate these thoughts and feelings. It can be great for relieving anxieties and stress whilst boosting one's self esteem during the process. Art therapy can be done individually, in groups or one on one with a therapist.
Gardening- Gardening offers those suffering with addictions the chance to ground themselves and receive the healing benefits of Mother Nature to all of their senses. Gardening offers both short term and long term rewards as they provide instant gratification and long term benefits through maintenance, food or medicine and beauty. Also offering a great reduction to depression and anxiety, being outdoors tending to the plants also gives those a chance to work as a team and create healing relationships with others.
Meditation and Mindfulness- Meditation actually trains the brain to be happy and gives a natural high without the need for substance abuse. Being mindful of your every thought and action will help one to observe the urges and cravings as they come and go, whilst mediation will help to witness these in a detached manner, removing you out of survival mode and reducing triggers.
Animal Contact- Animals are the best! 30mins with a puppy can shift your brain chemistry. But animal therapy can do much more. Animal Assisted Therapy is a thing but spending time with them can be done on your own too. Apart from reducing stress and calming the rage inside of us spending time with animals boosts our physical activity, helps us to express our inner emotions without feeling judged, helps us to feel less lonely in the world and less dependent on others for survival.
Acupuncture, Massage, Exercise- Exercise can help alleviate withdrawal symptoms by focusing the brain and body into a different direction, lifting the mood and keeping the body healthy. Yoga especially will help recenter and align the body with the mind. Acupuncture and massage help to re balance the body's energy systems whilst removing energy blocks, relieving pains and withdrawal symptoms and releasing toxins from the body.
Nutritional Restoration- Addictions and substance abuse can cause major nutritional deficiencies within our bodies. These depletions can lead to many physical and mental problems instantly and later on in life. Nutritional restoration can repair damage already done, improve one's mood and energy levels and increase the body's immunity levels. Protein will help repair and rebuild muscle mass and increased intake of vitamins and minerals such as omega 3 and vitamins A, B, C and zinc will help restore internal organs and functions.
ACV and Caffeine- Apple Cider Vinegar is a powerhouse for internal health. It is also known to stop cravings! Also medically ACV, as many know, is super good for our insides and will help to boost the immune system. As a short term remedy and to assist with initial cravings, caffeine can be substituted for substance abuse as it boosts energy and adrenaline without harmful withdrawals or health deficiencies. However it is possible to become addicted to caffeine in itself so use with restraint and caution.
Herbs- Adding some natural herbs to your diet can assist your body through the detoxing stage of recovery. Skullcap will help in the early stages of drug withdrawal as it will assist with the heavy onset of insomnia, headaches, nausea and depression. Milk Thistle will heal and protect your liver so your body can naturally detox the harmful substances. Burdock root is the savior for the kidneys,helping us to flush them out whilst purifying the blood at the same time. And lastly Hawthorn berries will restore any heart weaknesses or inflammation.
Hypnosis- Hypnosis by a trained professional can help en-train a dissociation with the addictive behaviors. It helps the patient see their actions through a different perspective and can assist them with believing that overcoming their battle with the addiction is achievable and desirable through releasing thoughts that their behavior patterns are unbending.
Talking to Someone - Of course battling through the recovery process of an addiction alone is an unbearable thought. Please if you have any addictive behaviors you are trying to kick reach out to someone. There are thousands of hotlines and groups set up all over the world that offer free counselling in person, over the phone or the internet. There are many rehab facilities available if you feel you can't trust yourself to walk all the way alone without relapsing that are very safe and welcoming. If you feel that's all too much try with just one person. Talk to a family member or a close friend. There is no way you have to do it alone.