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Deciding to seek help for substance abuse can sometimes be scary and overwhelming. Considering the various treatment options available to patients, it may not be easy to know how to choose. Substance abuse treatment should be tailored to meet the individual’s needs. You may find that what works best for one individual may not work for another. Holistic therapy addresses the underlying cause rather than treating the immediate symptoms. It looks at a patient’s spiritual, mental, physical, and emotional health and well-being. When applied correctly, holistic therapy help restore the natural balance of the body resulting in a more sustained, meaningful life. Different controlled studies and moderate-size clinical studies indicate that various behavioral interventions such as biofeedback and neurofeedback therapy may help to relieve depression associated and regain control of drug and alcohol abuse. So, what five ways can you utilize holistic therapy to treat drug addiction?

Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT)

Also known as “tapping,” EFT involves using fingertips to tap on various body points related to acupressure meridians. Energy psychology therapy helps to create a balance in the body and free up locations where energy may be blocked. As a person taps the points, he or she makes a verbal statement to identify or name the prevailing emotional issue.

Mindfulness-Based Therapy

People struggling with substance abuse tend to be disconnected from their bodies. They engage in substance use to self-soothe and numb against the painful emotions, thoughts, and experiences they are going through. Mindfulness therapy involves techniques that help increase self-awareness and connect an individual to understand how addiction affects their life. Mindfulness brings several psychological effects such as emotional reactivity, increased subjective well-being, and improved behavioral regulation. This form of holistic therapy helps addicts learn how to respond to life stressors instead of reacting to them, which helps them make more conscious decisions.  Transcendental meditation has been applied in detox and other treatment modalities. This form of meditation interrupts the addiction cycle by helping an individual’s body strive for balance or enter a state of homeostasis.

Art Therapy

Art therapy is a holistic therapy that uses mediums like paint, pens, clay, beads, tissue paper, nails, and wooden boards. It is similar to equine therapy in that it helps a person to create a therapeutic process and relax their body and mind. With the help of a therapist, the content in your art may be utilized to uncover and heal the emotional wounds associated with your addiction.

Equine Therapy

Taking part in equine-assisted therapy can help one address their addiction problem. A patient is accompanied by an equine specialist and mental health professional in this therapy. A person doesn’t need to know how to ride a horse because the activities are carried out on the ground. You can participate in activities like taking care of the horse or other more structured activities. Taking care of horses may foster the feeling of self-competence. The structured sessions of this holistic therapy provide a safer method of exploring deeper emotional issues you may be experiencing without judgment. The relationship you build with the horse helps to reflect how you interrelate with others and yourself. During the time you are interacting with the horse, issues hidden by addiction are unearthed. Working with your therapist, you can identify the patterns underlying and fueling your addiction while also practicing new ways of feeling, behaving, and thinking.


When we talk about biofeedback, it is a technique that helps people monitor their physiological processes that cause psychological changes. You may use a technological device that helps measure and give biofeedback, such as muscle tensions, heart rate, and skin conductance. As you see in real time the physiological changes occurring in your body, you can start learning the crucial self-regulation skill that is very important in the recovery from addiction.  A biofeedback program known as HeartMath is a good example of this form of holistic therapy. HeartMath uses an earpiece or finger to measure your heart rate variability (HRV).

Neurofeedback works to provide real-time feedback that helps with self-regulation. A person hooks up electrodes to their head to help monitor brain waves. Both biofeedback and neurofeedback may help increase relaxation and reduce cravings. They also help manage episodes of body emotional dysregulation and stress.

These holistic therapy techniques utilize the innate wisdom of the body to heal and provide a more natural approach to addiction treatment. If you want to explore a more natural way of treating addiction, you can think of holistic rehab. When finding a holistic rehab, you want to look for a program that assesses your specific needs and has a comprehensive individual approach to treatment.


Medical disclaimer:

Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance abuse, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery.

Licensed medical professionals review material we publish on our site. The material is not a substitute for qualified medical diagnoses, treatment, or advice. It should not be used to replace the suggestions of your personal physician or other health care professionals.

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