Alternative or Complementary Addiction Treatment

It can be scary and even overwhelming to take the first step towards looking for help with your substance abuse and addiction problem. This is especially when you consider the fact that there are so many different types of addiction treatment options available today.

Ideally, any type of therapy would work effectively as long as it is tailored to address your goals, needs, and requirements as an individual client. This is because what would work for one person might not necessary work in the same way for you.

Among the options that you might want to consider, alternative or complementary approaches to addiction treatment may prove to be effective. Owing to their rising popularity, these programs are increasingly more available today.

About Alternative or Complementary Addiction Treatment

Alternative or complementary approaches to addiction treatment refer to programs that are a bit different from those that have been traditionally used to manage and help clients overcome a substance use disorder.

There are several options available that can offer different treatment techniques. It is also possible to find comprehensive alternative or complementary approaches to your addiction treatment. They include but are not limited to:

1. Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT)

EFT involves tapping the tips of the fingers in a given sequence on certain parts and points of your body. These points, on the other hand, are linked to the meridians and acupressure points of the body.

To this end, this energy psychology technique can help you by increasing your energy balance. In the same way, it can also free up the areas of your body in which there might be a blockage of energy.

While using emotional freedom techniques, you will be required to tap while making verbal statements that name and identify the current problem or emotional issues that you are struggling with. You will also be required to practice acceptance of yourself in spite of your feelings and problems.

According to the practitioners of alternative or complementary medicine, EFT can be effective in addiction treatment and management. This is because it may help in addressing the reasons behind your substance abuse and dependency as well as aiding in coping with your cravings for intoxicating drugs and alcohol.

2. Mindfulness-Based Therapies and Yoga

If you are struggling with substance abuse and addiction, it could be because you are disconnected from your body. To this end, you may turn to alcohol and drugs with the goal of numbing your painful experiences, emotions, and thoughts as well as soothing yourself.

Even so, using these substances would require a level of mindfulness. This means that you will not be engaged fully in the present moment. Instead, you will be acting out of habits on automatic pilot mode - and not just from a place of innate awareness.

Mindfulness-based therapies like yoga can help you connect back to yourself as well as increase your awareness. As a result, you may develop an improved understanding of how addiction has been playing out in your day to day life.

You will also get the opportunity to address and respond to the stress factors in your life instead of automatically reacting to them. Further, you may be able to use mindfulness meditation to make decisions more consciously.

Some of the ways in which you can learn about and practice mindfulness include but are not limited to learning how to be present in your realities. You may also acquire it through meditation.

Yoga, for instance, is a form of moving meditation that can provide you with a new way to access all the benefits that come with mindful-based treatment. by practicing it, you may be able to acquire a sense of interconnectedness or innate spiritual connection - which could prove useful in addressing the feelings of shame and isolation that often come with substance abuse and addiction.

3. Equine Therapy

Equine therapy - also known as equine-assisted therapy - will involve working with licensed therapists and counselors and equine specialists. You do not necessarily have to know how to ride horses because most of the activities will be performed while you are still on the ground.

Some of these activities involve taking care of horses, among many others. The important thing to keep in mind is that they will all be highly structured with the goal of helping you to address your therapeutic issues of substance abuse and addiction.

While taking care of horses, you may develop feelings of deep self-competence. On the other hand, there will be other structured sessions that can guide you so that you are able to explore the deep emotional issues that you have been struggling with. All of this will happen without any judgement since you will be surrounded by the calming and reassuring presence of the horses.

In the process, you will also get to develop a relationship with the horses that you take care of. These relationships, on the other hand, will be a mirror to your relationship with yourself as well as other people in your life.

The issues that you might have been hiding may also come out during your interactions with horses. As a result, you can work with your therapist to identity the patterns and habits that fuel as well as underlie your chemical dependence on drugs and alcohol. further, you may even be able to practice new ways of behaving, feeling, and thinking.

4. Art Therapy

A form of experiential therapy, art therapy involves different types of media - including wooden boards, nails, beads, clay, tissue paper, newspapers, paint, pens, and much more.

It is related to equine therapy in the sense that it could offer you a subtler way to start addressing the issues linked to your substance dependence and addiction. As such, it can bring about different benefits.

For instance, the process of creating pieces of art could be relaxing and therapeutic. In the same way, the content of the art that you create will be explored by you with a therapist with the goal of uncovering as well as healing the emotional and behavioral wounds that are linked to your drug and alcohol abuse.

5. Adventure Therapy (AT)

Many alternative or complementary addiction treatment programs often incorporate experiential adventure-based therapy as part of their services. if you are active as an individual, you may be motivated to use this type of therapy. This is because it will give you the opportunity to self-reflect as well as work through the issues that are linked to your substance dependence in more mobile and dynamic ways.

Some of the activities that you may engage in include but are not limited to playing games, camping, hiking, and taking part in a ropes course. That said, adventure is like equine therapy in the sense that the ways in which you participate in the different activities could be paralleled with your life.

To this end, you can use it to gain deeper insight into what could be maintaining and driving your substance abuse habits. Further, you will learn new ways that you can use in your attempts at healing and recovery.

Activity therapy is a form of alternative or complementary treatment that can effectively help you develop various life skills that you could use on the road to recovery, health, and wellness. For instance, it will mostly involve tasks that are a challenge.

6. Others

Other forms of alternative or complementary addiction treatment options include but are not limited to:

  • Acupuncture
  • Ayurvedic medicine
  • Biofeedback/Neurofeedback
  • Massage therapy
  • Meditation
  • Psychodrama
  • Traditional Chinese medicine
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