Alternative Treatments Increasingly Crop Up in Substance Abuse Recovery Programs

Just about every addiction recovery program today includes both medical treatment options and conventional, psychological therapy. Most experts agree that these two components work together to make enduring recovery much more likely for those who engage in habitual substance abuse.

On the other hand, there is a growing recognition of the value that additional, alternative approaches can contribute. A wide variety of holistic addiction treatment options can be combined naturally with medical and psychological approaches and in ways that many find rewarding.

Rounding Out Conventional Treatment Programs with Alternative Approaches and Techniques

When it comes to holistic treatment for drug addiction, there are many possibilities to explore and incorporate into particular programs. Some of the approaches that most regularly crop up in drug rehab programs today include:

Neurofeedback. The states of the brain can be encapsulated and summarized in readouts that reflect current levels of electrical activity within that complex organ. The device used for this purpose, the electroencephalogram (EEG) is most often employed to monitor the status of patients staying in hospitals under medical observation. Another application for the EEG is a technique called “neurofeedback” which sees the patient being encouraged to watch and respond to the display in real time. As a means of teaching substance abusers to recognize generally subtle clues that can signal the danger of a relapse, neurofeedback has become a popular addition to many treatment programs.

Mindfulness meditation. The psychological side of addiction is always formidable, which is why virtually all treatment programs include significant amounts of individual and group therapy. Beyond the relief and improved control that psychological therapy can enable, however, there are also other types of progress that can be valuable, as well. Many rehab programs today, for example, include standard or optional classes covering a form of meditation that focuses on making participants more mindful of themselves and their surroundings. While it can take some time for the results to become clear, many believe that such sessions can be every bit as valuable as conventional, psychological therapy.

Visualization. The mind can also be harnessed and mastered in markedly different ways. Repeatedly, vividly visualizing a desired outcome, for instance, is now a standard practice among everyone from competitive athletes to high-powered executives. Many believe that those struggling to overcome substance abuse can make good use of the same technique.
Another Way to Improve the Odds of Recovery

Approaches like these and others can even be mixed and combined to better suit the needs of particular patients. What is becoming increasingly clear to many is that it can be worthwhile to move beyond medical treatment and conventional therapy when it comes to addressing addiction.