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What Exactly is Holistic Addiction Treatment?

by | Last updated Sep 7, 2021 at 10:27AM | Published on Jan 15, 2021 | Addiction Treatments

holistic addiction treatment

The integration of holistic therapies in otherwise conventional treatment programs isn’t new. The inclusion of alternative and holistic approaches for a wide range of ailments continues to rise. Substance abuse and addiction treatment are no exception to this trend. As rehab centers become more familiar with these therapies, holistic addiction treatment programs are becoming popular throughout the United States. 

What Does Holistic Mean?

To better understand holistic treatments, we first have to look at the word “holistic” by itself. Holistic refers to a person as a whole. It takes into consideration mental and social factors rather than just the symptoms of a disease.

Holism is the idea that we cannot see various systems as individual parts. Instead, we should see them as a whole. 

What is Holistic Therapy?

In essence, holistic therapies are non-medical methods that complement traditional treatment practices. The goal of holistic therapy is to align the mind, body, and spirit. Holistic therapy focuses on someone’s overall wellbeing rather than just addressing a single symptom. Holistic drug addiction treatment centers use exercise, meditation, and nutrition as part of their programs to help people overcome their substance use disorder. 

Evidence Around Holistic Addiction Treatment

The biggest hurdle holistic therapy face is a lack of research. There’s not enough research or evidence to speak about the efficacy of these treatments in addiction recovery. For this reason, it’s impossible to pair the effectiveness of the techniques with supporting long-term addiction recovery. However, when paired with evidence-based therapy, many people find holistic rehab helpful. 

About 4 out of10 adults in the United States already use some form of alternative medicine. The rise of holistic treatments will only continue to expand. A holistic approach to addiction treatment should aim to address addictive behaviors while also addressing all the other factors that played a role in developing the addiction in the first place. 

Types of Holistic Therapies in Addiction Treatment

Whether someone is looking for alcohol rehab or drug rehab facilities, holistic treatments offer comprehensive health care therapies and approaches that treat the person as a whole.

Holistic therapy focuses on different aspects of healthy living to promote overall wellness. From exercise to meditation, the idea is to cater to the body’s physical, emotional, and spiritual state. Some holistic therapies to expect in addiction treatment include:

  • Nutritional Therapy: recovering addicts are often struggling with nutrition deficiencies that can make the journey more challenging. Nutritional therapy helps them regain control of their eating habits and replenish the body to sustain recovery.
  • Exercise Therapy: exercise helps people build structure and routine. Not to mention, exercise helps relieve stress and strengthen the immune system, two things that are highly critical for recovery. 
  • Meditation and Yoga: guided meditation, breathing exercises, and yoga can help recovering addicts get a grip on their mental health. Tai chi is another holistic therapy that may also help with this. These meditative practices help increase focus and clarity of mind, which are much needed in treatment. 
  • Massage and Acupuncture: more than a luxury, massage therapy can help relieve stress, relax the body, and help flush toxins out of the body. Similarly, acupuncture, which works with the body’s energy channels, can help restore balance and treat addiction withdrawal symptoms. 

Other holistic approaches include art therapy, music therapy, dance therapy, and movement therapy. Of course, not all rehab centers offer this wide range of treatments. However, looking for a comprehensive approach incorporating meditation and exercise alongside nutritional assistance can be highly beneficial for addicts in recovery. 

Holistic Substance Abuse Treatments

Rather than focusing on holistic therapy approaches, most experts believe a combination of evidence-based research and supplemental holistic therapies is more likely to support an individual in maintaining recovery. 

A comprehensive treatment approach starts with more conventional therapies like individual counseling, medical detox, and behavioral therapies. Then, it weaves holistic recovery into the overall wellness plan, using treatments such as yoga, meditation, exercise, and acupuncture. Combining these two approaches offers a more comprehensive approach to addiction recovery that can help sustain long-term recovery. 

By integrating these major components into our addiction treatment center, we can offer different levels of care. We’re able to provide quality drug and alcohol addiction treatment that’s thorough without being triggering. Comprehensive addiction treatment gives patients holistic, personalized, and effective care.

In our treatment center, we incorporate holistic techniques at different levels of care to enhance the experience, for example:

  • Massage therapy and acupuncture can help with certain withdrawal symptoms
  • Exercise can help ease stress and other emotional issues
  • Spiritual practices can provide a sense of grounding
  • Nutrition can address the physical effects of malnutrition

These, paired with a more conventional, research-based approach to addiction treatment, can support long-term recovery and sobriety. Though many holistic treatments lack evidence-based information about their efficacy, there’s evidence that treatment satisfaction is related to treatment retention and completion, both of which are related to more favorable treatment outcomes. 

Finding Holistic Addiction Treatment Facilities

At Lighthouse Recovery Institute, we believe treatment approaches should be individualized. Each patient spends time with the clinical team upon their arrival. This is to determine the course of care that would most benefit them.

Patients work with their team to develop a treatment plan. This is the core of comprehensive addiction treatment.

If you or someone you know struggles with substance use disorder, please reach out for help immediately. It’s essential to have the support and supervision of drug addiction specialists by your side.

Finding a holistic addiction treatment center near you might be difficult but not impossible. Contact us today to learn more about our people-approach rehab programs. We will work with you to help you find the best treatment plan to beat your addiction.

Our admission specialists will also verify your insurance information to help you receive access to the various alternative therapies available, so you can have a more holistic treatment program and find long-lasting recovery. 

Lighthouse Editorial Team

Lighthouse Editorial Team

Our editorial team includes content experts that contribute to Lighthouse Recovery Institute’s blog. Editors and medical experts review our blogs for accuracy and relevance. We consistently monitor the latest research from SAMHSA and NIDA to provide you with the most comprehensive addiction-related content.
Medical Disclaimer:

Lighthouse Recovery Institute aims to improve the quality of life for anyone struggling with substance use or mental health disorder. We provide fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options, and their outcomes. The material we publish is researched, cited, edited, and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide in our posts is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. It should never be used in place of the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider.

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