Alternative Recovery Methods: How to Know What’s Right for You

If you or a loved one is in recovery for an addiction, you may be hearing a lot of buzz about alternative treatments. From acupuncture to hallucinogens, the addiction treatment community is always looking for new ways to cure addiction. But are any of these therapies right for you or the person who is seeking treatment? Read on to find out more about alternative addiction recovery therapies, ways to supplement treatment, and what really works. 

Alternative Therapies Cannot Replace Rehab

Addiction is a disease and like all diseases, it has a root cause. The majority of people who struggle with addiction seek out drugs or alcohol to cope with stress, untreated mental health issues, or personal trauma. Because of this deep and complicated connection, rehabilitation must address all of the elements that make up an individual’s addiction. The recovering addict still needs counseling to resolve internal turmoil, and to learn how to cope with their feelings and mental health. So always start addiction treatment with an accredited rehabilitation program

Use Alternative Treatments to Enhance Your Recovery

Some alternative therapies can actually act as supplemental care to your standard rehabilitation program. Yoga, art therapy, and meditation are all wonderful practices to incorporate into any healthy lifestyle and can be especially helpful for recovering addicts. Focusing on your well-being and creating beauty can help take your mind off the boredom and angst many recovering addicts feel. These hobbies are also perfect stress relievers, and stress is something you are bound to encounter, in recovery and throughout the rest of your life. 

There Is No Easy Answer to Addiction

Many people are attracted to alternative therapies because they just sound more appealing than traditional, structured rehabilitation programs. Unfortunately, recovering from addiction is never an easy task. Adapting your body and mind to exist free of alcohol and drugs takes intense therapy and constant care, especially in the beginning. The best bet to beat addiction is to look to an inpatient treatment plan or other forms of traditional treatment, to keep you focused and give you all of the resources you need to turn your life around. 

Staying Healthy Is Important to Any Recovery Effort

While alternative therapies will not cure your addiction, taking care of your body can help make your rehabilitation more successful. Diet is especially beneficial to building a strong body that can take you through recovery. You need your strength to fight cravings and triggers, so create a healthy meal plan. Base your diet on clean, whole foods and try to eat more vegetables and healthy grains. Be sure to also pay close attention to your gut health, which has a profound effect on your mood. To enhance gut health, turn to probiotics and foods with live cultures to keep your digestive system in check. In addition to healthy eating, look for ways to move more and exercise whenever you can as another way to boost your recovery efforts. 

You Should Consult Your Treatment Provider Before Beginning Alternatives

Any addiction treatment should include a counselor or a licensed medical professional who will oversee recovery. Most treatment centers offer someone to guide you along the way, so be sure to check in with this person before pursuing any alternative therapy options. Your provider can let you know about the legitimacy of alternative therapies, ensure they do not interfere with your overall treatment plan, and may even be able to refer you to a reputable alternative therapist. So check in with your primary recovery provider and double-check whether alternative treatments are right for you, and avoid trying therapies that they advise against. 

With so much focus on alternative medicine, it’s no wonder that alternative addiction therapies have gotten so much press. While alternative treatments may be helpful for some recovering addicts, they aren’t right for everyone, and they will never be a total solution. Any addiction recovery takes work, perseverance, and quality care. 

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