4 Alternative Therapy Methods for Addiction Recovery


The ‘one size fits all’ approach to addiction recovery is no more. Medical professionals now recognize that sending everyone to ‘traditional’ inpatient rehab facilities doesn’t always work.

Rehabilitation must be tailored to each person depending on the substance they’re addicted to and how long they have been using, alongside their background, support system and personality. Sometimes, multiple recovery methods need to be tried before a person finds one that’s right for them – and that’s okay!

When seeking treatment for addiction, there are alternative pathways to explore if you don’t feel that inpatient rehab clinics are for you – it’s just about identifying those options. Here are a few to consider when you’ve ruled out rehab.

  • College Rehab

SOBA College Recovery rehab center in New Jersey has a unique concept which combines inpatient rehab with getting patients straight back into school, work and life as soon as they’re ready. Rather than just concentrating on the problems of addiction, recovery and counseling, SOBA believes that giving patients a focus back on ‘real life’ is key to facilitating speedy (and thorough) recovery.

This option is perfect for young adults who want to be shown that life goes on after addiction, and who need to build up strength and confidence again for their future. Contact SOBA today to see how they can help you.

  • Women in Recovery

Rehab facilities that cater directly to the needs of women have been established to make addiction recovery better suited to their unique situations.

Women may need childcare facilities and special accommodation while attending rehab. This solves the problem of women with children feeling like they can’t access professional help due to worries of losing their children.

Female-only facilities also help some women with a history of domestic abuse or trauma feel more comfortable receiving treatment. Women’s rehab facilities are offered by Michael’s House in California and many other institutions around the world.

  • Holistic Treatments

Holistic and spiritual treatments aren’t for everyone but are well worth trying in your recovery journey, even if you’re skeptical of their success rates. Holistic supplemental treatment (always combined with professional medical treatment and therapy) can make a person feel more calm, mindful and de-stressed, taking some of the mental and physical strain out of recovery.

Holistic treatments include:

  • Acupuncture (a form of traditional Chinese alternative medicine involving thin needles being inserted into ‘acupoints’ in the body, relieving stress from the area)
  • Massage (has effects in treating anxiety and tenseness – common side-effects of withdrawing from drug use)
  • Meditation (encourages mindfulness and clearing of the mind to create a sense of calm and serenity)
  • Prayer and religious rituals (the world’s most famous addiction recovery method, the 12-step program, centers on surrendering control to a higher power and letting that guide you to a sober, clean life. This is not for everyone – not everyone is religious – but the success rates are very high, and patients often find giving over control to God or a higher power to be very therapeutic and helpful).

Be aware that these treatments should be practiced alongside proper medical treatment administered by doctors and qualified addiction counsellors, and not relied on as the only method of addiction treatment.

  • Rehab Retreats

Sometimes, rehabs that feel too clinical and like ‘hospitals’ put people off seeing treatment through to completion. Hospital environments can perpetuate feelings of ‘illness’ and sometimes even set recovery back for a person.

Addiction recovery retreats have been established for the purpose of providing an alternative to clinical rehab settings. Recovering with all the medical treatment necessary, but in a much nicer location with fresh air and scenic views – like the desert, English countryside, even in tropical Thailand or Bali – suits many people much better than an inner-city treatment center.

The drawback to these retreats is that they are expensive and not accessible to everyone. However, many people view rehab as an investment to regaining and restarting their lives after drug abuse – in which case, the cost may be worthwhile.