If you don’t like the idea of taking medication for your opiate addiction recovery, alternatives such as acupuncture, massage, yoga, or aquatic therapy may interest you.
Is Alternative Opiate Addiction Therapy Right for You?
According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, alternative treatment means using non-traditional methods for treating a variety of diseases and addictions. These alternative therapies often do not use drugs or traditional approaches to medicine. Those that seek out alternative treatments for opiate addiction, usually want to stop taking medications for the addiction. Alternative treatments for opiate addiction usually involve eastern medicine and other philosophies in order to alleviate both the cause and the consequences of the addiction.
Who Uses Alternative Treatments for Opiate Addiction?
Those that use alternative treatments for opiate addiction are often people who seek answers in places other than traditional medicine. They are those that:
- do not want to replace an addiction with medication
- those that have tried other treatments without success
- are disillusioned by traditional medicine
- want to find a more natural way of treating their addiction
- have problems with taking medications or traditional therapy
- do not believe in a 12 step approach
- are in chronic pain and are not candidates for methadone or Suboxone
- believe that the addiction is a spiritual problem and not a physical or psychological one
All of these are very valid even though it might not seem like it to others. The choice of treatment is a very personal one and believing a treatment will work for you is extremely important for recovery.
Types of Alternative Therapies
Many people shy away from alternative treatment methods because they do not know what types there are or how they work. Some treatment facilities already use alternative therapies in conjunction with more traditional medical treatments. You might have also participated in an alternative therapy without even realizing it.
Some of the more common alternative therapies are:
- Acupuncture – the use of needles at specific pressure points to relieve pain, symptoms of addiction, and cravings.
- Massage – rubbing and manipulating muscles to help relieve pain, some say that it also helps with cravings and anxiety.
- Electroacupuncture – this is similar to acupuncture only uses electricity at pressure points to reduce pain, relieve the symptoms of opiate addiction, and help with cravings.
- Yoga – this method of stretching and breathing is not only a form of exercise it teaches a deep relaxing meditation along with helping to heal the body.
- Reiki – this is a hands on therapy where the practitioner holds their hands over the addict and manipulates the energy in their body to speed recovery.
- Art therapy – art therapy is the practice of drawing, painting, or sculpting to relax the mind and discover true feelings that come out in the art.
- Aquatic therapy – aquatic therapy is using submersion in water as both exercise and meditation. Some believe that the feeling of being submerged helps to calm cravings and reduce anxiety.
Some of these therapies for opiate addiction are in practice in many of the treatment centers operating in the United States today. If you need more information or to find a treatment center that uses alternative therapies, call us at (800) 407-7195.