Yoga For Addiction Recovery
Nuview offers comprehensive outpatient addiction treatment that combines effective psychotherapy techniques with evidence-based alternative therapy. Our holistic treatment model utilizes yoga to help improve both mental and physical health.
Yoga is a practice that has evolved over thousands of years and provides a wide range of benefits for mental and physical wellness. While yoga is often recognized as a purely physical practice involving asanas or poses, yoga can take many forms.
Yoga practices can involve various movements, breathing techniques, and mindfulness exercises. Yoga helps calm the mind and reduce mental and physical sources of distress make it an excellent tool for addiction treatment.
We find that yoga works well as a complementary therapy to traditional forms of psychotherapy used in addiction treatment. It’s for this reason that yoga is offered as part of our holistic treatment model.
The following helps illustrate how yoga can provide a useful tool in recovery.
How Yoga is Used in Addiction Treatment
Yoga provides a complementary therapy option that can work alongside psychotherapy and help provide a synergistic effect that improves the effectiveness of addiction treatment overall. Yoga assists the recovery process by helping to manage stress better and provide improvement to one’s mental state during the challenging stages of treatment.
There are many benefits of Yoga for Addiction that can help improve the addiction treatment process, including the following:
- Improved sleep quality
- Stress relief
- Emotional healing
- Improved mood
- Reduced impulsivity
- Reduced impulsivity
- Improved focus
- Improved self-image
- Increased energy
- Increased physicality
- Increased self-awareness
- Pain relief
Practicing yoga in addiction treatment is optional and can be altered to meet one’s abilities. Instructors can make adjustments that allow just about anyone to participate regardless of skill level or physical ability.
If yoga is new to you, there is no need to worry; there are many ways to experience the benefits of yoga regardless of your capabilities.
Forms of Yoga Used in Addiction Treatment
Many people may not be aware that there are many different forms of yoga. Similar to how there are many ways to exercise different muscle groups, different yoga practices focus on improving various aspects of the mind, body, and spirit.
Advantages of Inpatient Rehab
For those struggling with a severe substance use disorder or addiction, inpatient rehab has the highest rates of long-term success. Inpatient treatment programs provide an environment with 24-hour care and thorough planning for the best ways to avoid relapse in the future.
Vinyasa yoga focuses on physical postures that strengthen the body and help build awareness of mind-body connectedness. Vinyasa yoga aims to create a flow-like state where movements and poses sync with inhalations and exhalations. This focus on conscious breathing helps to keep the mind still when the practice becomes challenging.
This same method of breathing to maintain a calm mental state can be used to help navigate the stressful situations encountered during recovery.
Pranayama involves various breathing techniques that are used to either stimulate or calm the nervous system. These breathing practices bring awareness to the powerful effect the rate at which we breathe can have on our mental state.
Yogic breathing offers a form of conscious control over our nervous system that can be used at any time to change our mental state. Pranayama is excellent for managing stress and can provide a tool for relapse prevention.
How Yoga Helps Mental Health
For those struggling with a chronic substance abuse disorder, there are often physiological changes in the brain and body that alter the way we think, feel, and behave.
Luckily for us, the brain has an innate healing mechanism that can repair the damages caused by drug and alcohol abuse when activated. Traditionally medication and psychotherapy have been the primary tools for treating substance abuse and mental health conditions.
In addition to these methods of treatment, new research has found that complementary techniques, including yoga, can provide an alternative form of therapy that can improve treatment outcomes.
Harvard Health reports that through the practice of yoga, there is a noticeable reduction in stress. In turn, this helps balance the nervous system and our internal stress response. By balancing the nervous system, it takes our mind and body out of the “fight or flight” response that causes anxiety and stress and creates a sense of calm and inner peace that helps deal with the difficulties faced in recovery.
Not to mention, practices such as yoga also promote positive chemicals in the brain, such as endorphins. Endorphins are the feel-good hormones that are responsible for the so-called “runner’s high.” They promote a state of calm and relaxation, increase pain tolerance, and create more emotional stability. One of the best reasons for practicing yoga is how amazing you feel after a session.
Yoga produces positive changes to the mind and body, including the ability to manage stress better. Stress can have damaging effects on both our mental and physical well-being.
Yoga teaches us to focus our minds on the way we move and the way we breathe and how it affects our mental state. We become aware of how the health of our body can influence the health of our mind and vis versa. It also teaches us to breathe correctly and to use our breath as a tool for managing stress and changing our mental state whenever needed.
Yoga can help ease stress andtension and has the physiological effects of reducing the stress hormones adrenaline (epinephrine) and cortisol. This can have alone can have a profound impact on physical health.
One of the greatest benefits of yoga is it encourages you to develop your own practice. Yoga is a powerful recovery tool that can be practiced in many different ways, and you get to choose which one best suits you. Yoga has become a mainstream practice, and the yoga practiced you develop in treatment can be continued throughout your recovery journey.
Building Awareness and Self-Acceptance
Yoga teaches us to focus our attention within and explore the labels and identities we have created for ourselves. This process of exploring the inner workings the mind help to establish a more genuine identity and to help build a sense of self-acceptance. Yoga helps to understand how false labels and a negative self-image are at play in our subconscious and how that can wreak havoc that can contribute to substance abuse.
Yoga is a great tool for building self-awareness and self-acceptance. It can teach us to be more compassionate for ourselves and the world around us. Yoga provides a valuable tool for addiction treatment that can help balance our mental and emotional state. It offers the ability to manage the challenging aspect of addiction recovery and can be used as a tool for relapse recovery.
Holistic Addiction Treatment – NuView Treatment Center
NuView offers yoga for addiction as part of our outpatient treatment program. Our holistic rehab model provides whole-person treatment that improves the health of the mind, body, and spirit. If you or a loved one needs help treating addiction, contact us to find out how we can help.