Well-rounded rehab programs are becoming more and more common in North America as researchers are discovering the benefits of combining multiple types of treatments. Integrated practices help patients help themselves while receiving professional medical and holistic treatment. The most common three include spiritual, holistic and clinical practices, and they provide a variety of healing tools for patients.
Spiritual practices teach patients to look inside their hearts and heal themselves. They learn to understand and overcome trauma and past experiences that have caused them pain and suffering. Part of spirituality is selfless giving and compassion, and the practice and teaching of spirituality in a rehab center emphasizes the traditional caring relationship between patients and their doctor.
The benefits of spiritual practice include decreased anxiety and depression, paired with development of compassion, coping skills, social support and healthy behavior. Spiritual disciplines prove to be effective for drug and alcohol rehab programs. Research also shows that spiritual practice helps people heal faster, improves health and decreases chances of heart attack and other life-threatening diseases. Of course, while spirituality is important, medical attention should not be neglected when needed.
Holistic practices (Eastern and Chinese medicine) are proving very beneficial for patients with mental health issues and substance abuse problems. For example, acupuncture, the Ancient Chinese practice of sticking needles into acupuncture points on the body to help with pain and stress relief, is being incorporated into many treatment centers.
Some people have a hard time believing that holistic medicine is effective since it is not always scientifically proven. However, it is an experiential type of therapy that works for some and not others. It also provides an alternative to the conventional, scientifically substantiated forms of medicine that are most common in Western cultures.
Clinical approaches are what we’re used to the West. These include the incorporation of doctors, hospitals, prescriptions and the like. Its effectiveness is based on scientific research and study, whereas holistic and spiritual medicine are based on a person’s experience and reaction to the practice.
There are different types of clinical medicine that can be practiced in rehab centers, including use of prescription medication (for mental illness and drug withdrawal), physiotherapy (physical therapy), occupational therapy and therapies directed towards specific diseases or ailments that patients may have, such as cancer. Consultations are held with treatment center staff and patients to work out the best possible solution and form of therapy for their individualized needs.
Remember that there is no right or wrong answer when you’re finding the type of therapy that works best for you. Everyone is different, as are the circumstances that lead them to look for help, so explore the options and take into account your personal needs when deciding what path—or combination of paths—to take.
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