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When you think of addiction recovery, chances are the first thing that comes to mind is a twelve step program. However, treatment is not a one size fits all process. Different programs work better for different people. It’s also not uncommon for a variety of techniques to be used to supplement recovery to reduce relapsing.

If you are taking the brave first step towards recovery, consider the following methods before checking yourself into just any rehabilitation facility.

Focus on Diet and Exercise


track and field event

Addiction recovery

Addiction treatment is more than overcoming your alcohol and substance abuse, it’s about creating a new healthy lifestyle. Supplementing your main recovery program with proper diet and exercise is a great way to start this habit.

Studies have proven that exercise helps prevent relapse. Through a boost in mood, getting in shape, and reducing stress and anxiety, exercise is an excellent addition to recovery. Likewise, a balanced diet can even out hormones and increase your energy. You’ll feel better physically and mentally.

Holistic Treatment


holistic treatment

Addiction recovery

Though traditional twelve-step programs make up about of quarter of rehabilitation facilities, holistic treatment centers are rapidly growing in popularity. This should come as no surprise as this treatment focuses the entire person instead of simply addressing the symptoms. In other words, it is not enough to stop using.

The goal is to improve your full self. This can be explored through a variety of ways, such as acupuncture, meditation, therapies, and exercise. For the best results, seek holistic methods used in conjunction with a more traditional structured treatment.

Spiritual Recovery


Spiritual recovery

Addiction recovery

Spiritual is not synonymous with religious. Though people define it different ways, the majority consider spirituality their connection with the outside world and higher power. According to Mental Help, spiritual programs function on the belief that a disconnection with a higher power puts people at a higher risk of addiction.

These programs help rebuild meaning and find purpose in life. It is no surprise that many programs, including the classic 12 Step AA program, have a spirituality component. Through addressing the spiritual need of a person, a person loses the need to turn to alcohol and substance. However, be wary of programs that rely too heavily on spirituality as they tend to have the lowest success rates.

Practice Mindfulness


Practice mindfullness


It is not uncommon for the route of addiction to come from unpleasant emotions, such as stress, depression, and anxiety. Psychology Today recommends practicing mindfulness to learn to cope with these negative feelings and not need to turn to alcohol or drugs to relieve the pain.

Mindfulness is the practice of being aware of what causes these triggers and teaches you to find the route of the issue so that you can address it in a rational way. Big or small, the goal is to keep your emotions in check before they get out of hand. Meditation, yoga, and tai chi are excellent exercises to help you turn inward and reflect on your emotional state. Guided sessions during recovery are a great and safe way to find the route of your issues.

Explore Different Types of Therapy


Massage Therapy

Massage Therapy

Many rehabilitation facilities offer therapy as a part of their program, but just like treatment programs, it is not a one size fits all solution. Some patients benefit from one on one talk sessions where they can dig deep into their issues. Others greatly gain from group therapies and listening other people’s stories. Art and music therapies can offer a new form of expression for those who have trouble expressing their thoughts.

Do not be afraid to look into the different types of therapies until you find one you are comfortable with. It is an incredibly emotional process and can unearth some difficult issues, but being able to express your experiences can be powerful, soothing, and healing.

Getting Help

Deciding to get help is a huge first step. Though it may feel overwhelming, finding a recovery program that best fits you is important. Finding the right place will not only help you get sober but help you stay sober afterwards and leads to a healthier lifestyle and improved quality of life.


Kimberly Hayes enjoys writing about health and wellness and created to help keep the public informed about the latest developments in popular health issues and concerns. In addition to studying to become a crisis intervention counselor, Kimberly is hard at work on her new book, which discusses the ins and outs of alternative addiction treatments.

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