One of the most notable trends in the healthcare industry today is embracing alternative or complementary treatment approaches into the standard therapies with many kinds of ailments.
Addiction is considered to be a disease and it is one of the conditions where holistic treatment methods are being applied today. It has proved to be beneficial when used with traditional treatment approaches.
What it really means?
The word holistic in itself is in reference to a person as a whole in terms of health care interventions. This is the kind of approach that focuses on the body and mind simultaneously to help in total healing.
In many centers, holistic approaches are seen as a great opportunity for patients to take care of their physical and psychological needs. Holistic approaches include acupuncture, massage therapy, meditation, reiki, and yoga. Patients can see some improvements during the rehabilitation and other areas of their life.
What does such a treatment program include?
In most cases, rehabilitation programs also incorporate different kinds of holistic techniques integrated into spiritual, mental, and physical models to come up with a comprehensive treatment for substance disorders.
Some of the techniques are considered complementary or alternative. Some of them are based on practices that are derived from different cultural traditions.
Today around 4 out of 19 adults use some kind of alternative and complementary medicine. This is a trend that seems to be growing with time.
At the root of the trend, they are intended to treat the person as a whole and take care of the overall well-being instead of concentrating on only one element of the behavior or symptoms that they are showing.
When you think of it, holistic addiction treatment does not aim at curtailing the isolated addictive behaviors that a patient deals with but also addresses other factors that have a role in addiction development.
Incorporating the holistic techniques in treatment of substance abuse
There are cases where different holistic approaches are used to augment some aspects of standard recovery approaches. By doing so, the approaches can assist with:
Some withdrawal symptoms (acupuncture/massage for pains and aches)
Emotional issues like stress that may have led to the development of some compulsive patterns
Lack of solid spiritual grounding
Eating habits that are unhealthy causing malnutrition together with chronic use of substances
Correcting the energetic imbalance by manipulating body energy with Reiki, for example
Those who offer these practices claim that they improve patients’ chances of recovering completely from different substance-related disorders.
However, it is important to note that holistic therapies are best used together with other standard treatment efforts. They should not be a replacement for the traditional evidence-based approaches.
The effectiveness of the techniques
If you are looking into the holistic programs, you may not find any kind of research that actually backs the efficacy of the treatments. It should be noted that not enough research has been conducted regarding the different holistic therapies that are available today.
In addition, the research that has been done already is still inconclusive. This means that the effectiveness of these techniques in terms of supporting lasting recovery is still not well known.
There are cases where the treatments can attract people who are not interested in venturing into the available conventional treatments. This makes a part of the population prefer the holistic option.
With some encouragement, such persons can be advised about the research-based treatment, helping them choose options that have a greater chance of offering long-term recovery.
By adding the holistic approach, people feel at ease and productive in terms of treatment response. They are able to deal with the challenges that are related to rehab and detox.
For the above reasons, holistic approaches can be a great way to compliment the evidence-based modalities.

Author's Bio: 

Manny is a mental health treatment writer.