Holistic therapies are becoming extremely popular across a broad range of people for various reasons. Activities such as yoga or treatments like aromatherapy are now quite commonplace and part of many peoples’ lifestyles. Holistic therapies are also increasingly being used within a rehab drug treatment context and at Elevate; we have been successfully working with patients to achieve long-term recovery in completely natural ways.

Holistic treatments and therapies are mostly based on ancient practices that were used in times when there was no pharmacological alternative. The theory behind holism is that a person is more than just the sum of their body parts and that effective rehab treatment centers need to address mental, physical and emotional issues at the same time in order to heal the person as a whole.

But how do holistic therapies work for people combating drug or alcohol addiction? Here, we take a closer look at some of the treatments involved in holistic rehabilitation programs and how they work to boost recovery outcomes.

How Exercise Helps With Recovery
Elevate offers physical fitness as a component of holistic rehabilitation therapy, which serves to strengthen the bodies of patients who are suffering the consequences of substance abuse. There are significant benefits to regular exercise; particularly that it promotes natural serotonin production which gives people a natural “high.” This is important for someone who has been used to creating artificial pleasure sensations with substances and teaches them how to find natural ways of feeling great.

Physical fitness also protects the body from disease and illness and at Elevate; we reinforce an exercise program with nutritional and dietary advice. When someone has been using substances for a while, they are likely to have neglected themselves and their diet. By addressing the physical damage done to the body as a result of substance abuse, patients are better motivated to continue on the rehabilitation program and achieve long-term recovery.

Meditation and Mindfulness
Learning how to live in the moment and silence negative internal dialogue is important for people facing triggers for substance abuse in recovery. Meditation has been shown to be a powerful tool to allow individuals to react in healthier ways to stressors, cravings or triggers for use. This is an ancient practice that serves to completely slow down the body in a gentle way for feelings of intense relaxation. This serene feeling is referred to as a “meditative state.” After being guided to attain a meditative state by a trained therapist, patients can call upon this skill to deal with stress in recovery.

Mindfulness and meditation are also useful as tools of self-exploration for patients on a holistic rehabilitation program. Addiction is characterized by a compulsion to use drugs that is so overwhelming that individuals can feel powerless to resist cravings. Mindfulness practices seek to restore a person's connection with themselves so that they learn to place their needs ahead of substance use for a successful recovery.

Why Yoga Helps in Rehab Treatment Centers
Some people who have abused drugs may have started their addiction journey by taking prescription painkillers. Yoga can help people manage their pain in a healthy way. This is achieved by focusing on individual parts of the body while slowing down and deepening breathing. Yoga is essentially a combination of postures and stretches that work the entire body bit-by-bit. The emphasis on slow, stretching movements is particularly useful for people suffering from arthritis or joint pain as physiotherapy.

Although yoga seems to be a very sedate form of exercise, it is surprisingly invigorating, and participants often welcome the meditation period that generally winds up a class. However, the feeling of well-being created by practicing yoga is very compelling and acts as a solid motivation for people to remain sober.

Holistic Rehabilitation Increases Self-Awareness
An important part of rehabilitation therapy for substance abuse is identifying and understanding the thoughts and feelings that drive addictive behaviors. Holistic practices empower people to be more introspective so that they learn things about themselves they may never have known before. Improved self-awareness tends to make people feel more accountable for their behavior which benefits people who have lost control over their actions for a while.

Addiction dominates a sufferer's life to such an extent that they may have lost sight of what was previously important to them. Interests, relationships, work, school, and family can all be swept aside in preference of using substances above anything else and more often than not, the sufferer isn't aware of these negative changes. Holistic treatments in rehabilitation therapy offer a patient healing that meets their unique and personal needs for overall wellbeing so that they are able to put themselves first in recovery.