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Alternative Treatment
alcohol detox program playing the drums

Alternative Treatment

Traditional methods of addiction treatment have been effective for many people, but they do not work for everyone. Each person and their addiction is unique, therefore, their treatment should be as well. Alternative treatment approaches are becoming increasingly more common in the recent years and have been proven to be highly beneficial. Alternative treatment programs combine practices, such as acupuncture and meditation, with traditional therapies and detox medications in order to provide holistic care for individuals in recovery.

If you or a loved one has had a problem with addiction in the past and previous attempts at rehab have not been successful, alternative treatment may be the answer. Alternative treatment can cover a variety of different methods, and once in rehab, it will be determined which method suits each individual best.  One patient may open up from music therapy, whereas others may require deep immersion therapy in nature. Equine therapy and acupuncture are other common approaches of alternative treatment that have been able to benefit many addicts. Regardless of the particular approach you may find useful, the goal of these alternative programs is the same, to help patients achieve long-term sobriety.


Different Types of Treatment

It is important that the rehab works closely with each individual in order to discover the method that will suit patients best, based on their unique needs. Many centers have a wide array of treatment options, allowing programs to be highly personalized. Some examples of programs being utilized at alternative rehab facilities include:

  • Acupuncture – The flow of energy through the body is increased by inserting thin needles into the skin. This is known to reduce withdrawal symptoms, as well as anxiety, irritability, cravings, and aches and pains.


  • Biofeedback – Techniques such as deep breathing and progressive relaxation are practiced to physically change bodily functions such as breathing rate, heart rate, stress level, muscle activity, anxiety, and promote self-confidence.


  • Chiropractic Treatment – By increasing flexibility and range of motion, stress levels can be dramatically reduced. Chiropractic manipulations play a large role in improving overall emotional wellbeing by keeping neurochemical communication pathways open.


  • Meditation – This technique improves mental clarity, self-awareness, and self-efficacy. Meditation allows addicts to visualize their cravings from a third person point of view and successfully resist urges.


  • Massage Therapy – Stress is released during massage therapy and overall sense of wellbeing is increased. As dopamine production in the brain is stimulated overall circulation is improved, leading to a faster detox process. This form of therapy also increases body awareness, which allows for deeper relaxation and inner peace.


  • Yoga – By connecting the mind, body, and spirit, yoga promotes physical, mental, and spiritual strength.


  • Nutrition – Although this is not necessarily considered an alternative treatment method, good nutrition promotes optimal health. When the body is healthy, the mind has a greater chance of achieving optimal health.


The Value of the Holistic Approach

Alternative addiction treatment refers to healing practices that have not been extensively scientifically tested. The little evidence to back up their effectiveness does not mean that these treatments are any less effective. Research is increasingly pointing to the power the brain has to heal the body. Due to this, hospitals are now implementing alternative treatments into their patient’s care. The ability to better control ones emotions and attitudes leads to overall improved wellness.

In most cases, alternative programs can be combined with more traditional methods for a more well-rounded approach to addiction treatment. Finding the root of the cause for the addiction is one of the first steps in recovery and alternative programs can better assist in this process. One should not feel discouraged if rehabilitation has not worked for them in the past, but explore their options for treatment in the future. See just how alternative and holistic treatment can turn the life of you or a loved one around.