What Are Holistic Rehab Programs?

Medically Reviewed by Johnelle Smith, M.D. on

Holistic addiction treatment programs aim to help people achieve recovery through an overarching approach. Some common holistic-based treatment services include meditation, art therapy, and physical activities to promote overall wellness and lasting recovery.

What Are Holistic Rehab Programs?

Drug treatment programs typically employ evidence-based approaches, such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) or the use of medications to treat substance use disorders (SUDs).

But people can also benefit from holistic-based treatment approaches, which address the whole person, focusing on mental, emotional, and physical well-being in addiction recovery.

Note that the term “holistic treatment” can encompass a wide range of services that focus on improving a person’s overall mental and physical health.

Or it can refer to a specific approach that has helped people recover but is not yet backed by enough research to be considered proven, like acupuncture, yoga, or art therapy.

Holistic drug rehabilitation programs vary in their approaches, and most also incorporate evidence-based treatment options, such as therapy or counseling.

Types Of Holistic Addiction Treatment

Many traditional addiction recovery programs include holistic services in their clients’ treatment plans, but their core offerings are psychotherapeutic or medicinal in nature.

Holistic-minded drug rehab facilities have received more attention in recent years. These programs mix science-backed addiction treatment services with new approaches to rehabilitation.

Rehab centers that offer holistic options only are relatively rare, but options do exist.

Yoga-Based Addiction Treatment

Yoga-based approaches integrate yoga practices and meditation into addiction treatment. People can develop greater self-awareness, learn how to cope with cravings, and build resilience.

These programs emphasize wellness through:

  • promoting physical fitness
  • supporting emotional well-being
  • offering stress reduction

Nutrition-Focused Rehab Programs

These rehab programs prioritize the role of a balanced diet in addiction recovery and educate clients about the impact of nutrition on their physical and mental health.

Proper nutrition aids in addiction recovery through:

  • repairing the damage caused by substance abuse
  • supporting mood stabilization
  • enhancing overall health and well-being

Mindfulness-Oriented Rehab Programs

Clients learn to be fully in the present moment in mindfulness-orientated drug rehab programs, gaining skills to help recognize unhelpful thoughts and behaviors and not act on them.

Mindfulness practices like meditation can help reduce stress and cravings, promoting self-awareness and emotional regulation.

By fostering a deeper connection to one’s inner self, clients can make healthier choices and learn to manage triggers.

Equine Therapy-Based Rehab Programs

This is an alternative type of therapy that incorporates interactions with horses to promote emotional healing and personal growth.

Clients engage in activities like grooming, riding, and caring for the horses, building confidence, patience, and other skills that aid in recovery and living a healthy life.

The strong bond formed with animals can also help people struggling with addiction develop empathy.

Art And Expressive Therapies In Addiction Treatment

Another alternative treatment approach is art therapy, which can encompass many forms of expression and creative outlets to facilitate emotional expression and self-discovery.

Expressions of art therapy include:

  • painting
  • music
  • dance
  • writing

Through these often nonverbal means, clients explore their thoughts, feelings, and experiences. It can provide a cathartic release, help process trauma, and develop healthy coping mechanisms.

Nature And Wilderness Therapy For Addiction Recovery

In the same vein as equestrian rehab programs, nature and wilderness therapy immerse clients in the great outdoors, utilizing natural environments as a therapeutic setting.

Participants of nature and wilderness therapy may engage in activities like:

  • hiking
  • camping
  • adventure challenges

Adventure therapy promotes self-reliance, teamwork, and resilience while encouraging clients to connect with fellow participants and the environment.

Time spent in nature offers a unique avenue for healing, emphasizing the connection between physical well-being and the natural world during addiction treatment.

Is A Holistic Rehab Center Right for You?

More people are becoming interested in holistic treatment approaches in addiction recovery programs.

If you or your loved one is interested in holistic services and looking for a more comprehensive approach to recovery, holistic programs may be the right choice.

Moreover, those who prefer a focus on overall well-being and self-discovery are often better aligned with holistic treatment programs.

Still, you may want to consider the inclusion of specific evidence-based approaches, such as group therapy or medication-assisted treatment (MAT), as these are not available at all rehab centers offering holistic approaches.

Consulting with addiction treatment professionals and exploring all of your options can help you make an informed decision based on your unique health needs and personal preferences.

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Medically Reviewed by
Johnelle Smith, M.D. on
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