Yoga For Addiction Recovery

Yoga is an age-old practice. It has many benefits and can be an additional tool used in addiction recovery. The rehabilitation process in drug or alcohol addiction can be stressful and create intense anxiety. The use of yoga for recovering addicts has proven to relieve that stress and anxiety. At Miracles Recovery Center we have a team of trained medical professionals ready to provide you with details of the holistic options we offer. 

What Is Yoga?

Yoga is a form of mind-body practice. The meaning of the word “yoga” is to connect or unite. Yoga is useful for treating many health conditions such as stress and anxiety. Not only is yoga used to improve mental health, but also physical health. The eight “limbs” of yoga are:

Conduct within society

Personal discipline

Postures/poses

Breathing

Concentration

Contemplation

Meditation

Absorption/stillness

Yoga Class
Yoga can be used for recovery addiction and is a form of holistic “natural” therapy. The practice of yoga incorporates physical, mental, and spiritual health benefits. Its purpose is to transform and benefit all aspects of your life.

Participation in yoga is simple. It is an easy and inexpensive form of exercise, as there is no equipment necessary in order to participate in it. The overall benefits of yoga include:

  • Physical Health Benefits of Yoga: Flexibility and balance are a part of the practice of yoga. Stretching will increase your range of motion. This balance will provide you with better coordination and strength.
  • Mental Health Benefits of Yoga: Yoga can clear the mind and allow for better concentration.
  • Spiritual Health Benefits of Yoga: Yoga brings about self-awareness and a sense of calm.
Yoga Triangle Pose

Yoga And Its Effect On the Brain

There are changes that occur to your brain when you use drugs or alcohol excessively. These changes are even more apparent if substance abuse occurs over an extended period. Addiction can alter such things as emotions, decision-making, and the ability to control impulses. To reverse this damage, your brain has to work very hard during the detox and recovery process.

The practice of participating in yoga for addiction recovery will allow your brain to relax and heal. It is known that yoga causes your brain to release chemicals into your body. Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin, and endorphins are the chemicals that are released. These are all chemicals that can promote a decrease in your stress level.

Yoga can also improve these functions of your brain:

  • Processing of memories
  • Better decision making
  • Regulation of your emotions
  • Increased attention span

The improvements you will feel by participating in yoga are tremendous and can help you to overcome your drug or alcohol addiction. Yoga will allow you to become more aware of yourself and your surroundings. It will help you to focus and can give you an increased desire to remain sober.

Can Yoga Help Me Overcome My Addiction?

Yoga for addiction recovery is an approach that can supplement traditional drug rehabilitation treatment therapies. It can provide a way to help you find a sense of calm and stability that may have been missing in your life. Yoga can also fill a void that you may have previously been filling with drugs or alcohol.

Drug or alcohol addiction takes a huge toll on your body. An improvement of your overall health has many advantages. Yoga can allow you to have the strength and stamina to focus on becoming sober and maintaining a sober lifestyle. 

There are many medical benefits of yoga for addicts: 

  • Increased blood flow: Yoga improves the body’s blood flow/circulation, which allows oxygen levels to increase within your blood cells.
  • Improved heart rate: Yoga lowers the resting heart rate which then improves your endurance.
  • Decreased blood sugar levels: Yoga lowers cortisol, which helps to reduce stress when released, as well as, blood sugar, and adrenaline levels.
  • Increase in focus: Yoga trains the regions of the brain necessary to help people concentrate better and remember things more clearly.
  • Release of tension: Yoga teaches you to identify which parts of your body react to stress and provides a way to relieve this tension.
  • Creates a stronger spine: Yoga helps strengthen your muscles, most importantly, the spine. Increased movement allows for more flexibility.
  • Increase in bone strength: By lifting your body weight during the exercises you will get stronger.

The Benefits of Yoga To Cope with Mental Illness

Not only can yoga benefit you physically, but also mentally. The practice of yoga focuses on breathing. When you learn how to concentrate on your breath you begin to realize the benefits.

Yoga creates a sense of calm and a decreased level of stress. The various poses in yoga help stretch your body. The breathing exercises slow your heart rate and lessen any anxiety you may be feeling.

Besides helping those with addiction, yoga also has many benefits for people suffering from a wide range of mental illnesses. These include:

  • Anxiety: Yoga helps create an overall sense of calm for people with anxiety.
  • Depression: For people with depression, yoga provides a sense of purpose and a happier mindset. 
  • Trauma/PTSD: People who have experienced some type of traumatic event or experience often are diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). PTSD symptoms cause people with this mental health condition to have flashbacks of their trauma, nightmares, resulting in distress. Yoga helps to calm the mind and body, allowing people to better manage and cope. 
  • Anger/Stress: Yoga is a form of meditation, which helps to create a sense of calm and a decreased level of stress. Exercise releases endorphins and lowers levels of cortisol, which is the body’s stress hormone that regulates a wide range of vital processes throughout the body. Think of cortisol as nature’s built-in alarm system. When someone is stressed and does yoga, cortisol is released, and the body can regulate the body and improve the way the mind and body respond to stressors in fight-or-flight situations. 
  • Insomnia: For people with insomnia, yoga helps with stretching, and relaxation allows the body to rest better. 
  • Improved memory: Yoga help can help improve a person’s overall focus and memory.  

Yoga can also improve a person’s self-esteem. The sense of spirituality that yoga produces may make you feel an increased sense of worth. This is especially beneficial in the addiction recovery process and can help reinforce the goal of remaining sober.

How Can Yoga Aid In the Addiction Recovery Process?

Holistic rehabilitation practices, such as yoga, are included as a part of many substance abuse treatment programs. Holistic treatments are a more natural form of care. When yoga is used as part of the addiction treatment process there are many positives. It is an activity that can open both your mind and your body. 

The drug or alcohol addiction recovery process can be extremely stressful. Stress is triggered by the hormones cortisol and adrenaline. Yoga can help to balance those hormones and give you the coping tools you need during detox and recovery.

The practice of yoga as it is used for recovery addiction can provide an escape from the world around you. It can become the healthy option of escape versus the use of drugs or alcohol as an option of escape. Becoming more in-tune with your body and mind will allow you to be mindful of the events or situations that are your triggers that may prompt a relapse.

When combined with other treatments, yoga can be the foundation for providing the mental and physical strength you need to become sober. Cravings can be lessened and relapse controlled when yoga is introduced into your treatment plan. Ongoing participation in yoga beyond your days in treatment can also help maintain your sobriety.

Yoga and Meditation pose

Holistic Therapy Options Available At Miracles Recovery Center

Miracles Recovery Center is located in Port St. Lucie, Florida. As part of our treatment options, we offer a holistic approach within our treatment therapy programs. We find that for those who are struggling with addiction to drugs or alcohol this approach works well. Our holistic rehab treatment focuses on treating your entire mind and body. 

By not just treating a person’s symptoms, these non-traditional treatment methods help find the root of their addiction. In addition, contributing factors such as mental illness won’t be overlooked or misdiagnosed, which is often a common issue, and a reason why people don’t receive proper treatment and relapse.    

When you are ready to speak to one of our professional staff members concerning treatment options for you or your loved one, please make the call. We are here for you. Miracles Recovery Center has a facility and trained medical staff who can provide you with the support you or your loved one needs to take the first step to recovery. 

The combination of our medical and holistic treatments can be the start to the new, healthier life you or your loved one deserves. Please reach out to us today to begin the process.

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