Many approaches to treating addiction focus on talk therapy. These options play an important role in the healing process, but there is more ground to cover. In fact, long-term recovery depends on overall wellness. Wilderness therapy offers a number of benefits that support overall wellness.
Change in Setting
Setting is a major factor in substance abuse. Specifically, in your normal environment, you get easy access to your drug of choice. Odds are good that your friends or colleagues also use and encourage you to use. Therefore, your regular haunts become triggers for substance abuse.
Going out into the wilderness removes all of that. Your friends, colleagues, and easy access to drugs or alcohol go away. Instead, you’re in a setting that you probably don’t associate with using drugs or alcohol. It’s a very practical way of reducing the temptation to relapse.
Addiction isn’t just a physical condition, but also a mental and emotional one. Therefore, that means that any therapy must address more than just the physical side of things. It must also address the psychological and spiritual. However, that calls for a more holistic approach.
Wilderness therapy excels in this respect. Spending time in nature helps you see yourself in a larger context. Moreover, the beauty and sheer size of the natural world encourage reflection about yourself and your actions. It helps you see how your addiction harms you and your family.
Venturing out into nature helps you start the process of rebuilding your physical health. People spend most of their time indoors, often sitting for long stretches. However, simply walking around outside exposes you to fresh air and sunshine. That combo can improve your immune system, reduce stress, and boost your energy levels.
Of course, a good wilderness therapy program includes a more robust schedule. You’ll hike, set up camp, and gather wood. You might end up a little sore, but that’s a good sign that your muscles are on the mend. As a result, it lays a foundation for a more physically active and healthier life
Addiction changes how people process emotions. It limits your ability to understand the feelings of others or to extend trust. When your group travels into the wilderness, however, you can’t do it all alone. You must rely on others to get everything done.
For example, not everyone can set up a tent, or start a fire, or cook over a campfire. While your program leaders will help, working with other people is necessary. That process of sharing work and rewards helps you rebuild your ability to trust.
It’s common for those with addiction to stop caring about their own well-being. For example, they don’t eat on a regular basis or pick healthy foods. Many stop bathing and brushing their teeth. If they get injured, they don’t treat the injury or seek treatment from a doctor.
Spending time in the outdoors helps you start rebuilding good self-care habits. You eat on a fairly regular schedule. In addition, you see others doing basic self-care activities like brushing their teeth. You also get experience in treating the small scratches and cuts that go along with any outdoor activities.
Wilderness Therapy at Crest View Recovery Center
Crest View Recovery Center focuses on a reality therapy model. We offer both the standard talk therapy options, as well as holistic options like wilderness therapy. For example, our programs include:
Drugs or alcohol can consume your entire life if you let them. However, you can take action with help from a quality rehab program. Contact Crest View Recovery Center at 866.327.2505 and we’ll help you reclaim your life.