Why an Experiential Therapy Program in Ohio Can Help Recovery
Adventure therapy is a form of alternative treatment offered at many inpatient rehab centers. Through a range of outdoor activities, adventure therapy promotes self-esteem, healthy communication skills, and positive thinking.
People who struggle with addiction often say their substance use stopped being fun a while ago. While they may have initially enjoyed the effects of drugs and alcohol, they continue to use out of habit. Adventures services can help combine recovery principles with an element of fun.
An adventure therapy program in Ohio is where recreation meets recovery. In this addiction therapy program, participants engage in activities like ropes courses, hiking, and outdoor sports. Patients enjoy time in nature, and trained staff help facilitate character lessons on trust and communication.
Used in combination with our evidence-based practices, some potential benefits of adventure activities in rehab for some patients may include:
Healing for the Body, Mind, and Spirit
People who suffer from addiction may feel that their bodies have turned on them. Perhaps they have health issues related to alcoholism, or their body is physically dependent on opioids. Adventure activities may be a restorative way to help patients feel healthy and happy in their bodies again.
Additionally, these services may offer healing benefits for the mind and emotions of some patients. The recreational activities allow patients to process these abstract aspects of recovery, outside of a clinical setting.
Recovering Enjoying Everyday Things
An adventure therapy program in Ohio helps people realize they can bring an element of fun back into everyday life.
Additionally, people who are recently sober may be experiencing withdrawal symptoms like depression and anxiety. Activities like hiking and outdoor sports cause a dopamine and serotonin release in the brain. These chemical messengers are known as the brain’s “feel-good” hormones and can help to balance a person’s mood.
The human brain likes to take certain risks. It feels good to try something new, or take a chance in an unfamiliar situation. If a person doesn’t have hobbies or a fulfilling career, they may end up getting involved with unhealthy forms of risk-taking.
Something like an adventure therapy program in Ohio requires participants to take both physical and emotional risks. By doing so, a positive response is triggered in the brain, including a desire to repeat the activity. Through activities like ropes courses and team-building activities, the brain finds a healthy way to experience risk.
People who suffer from addiction may direct their time and energy toward drugs or alcohol. This can result in social isolation or unhealthy relationships. Fortunately, adventure services encourage participants to be curious and creative. Problem-solving requires teamwork and pushing toward a common goal. The relational skills help patients form bonds with peers as well as program staff.
In a group activity, people’s natural talents quickly become evident. One participant may display a show of leadership, and another may be a quick-thinking whiz. Allowing natural talent to surface is one of the most beneficial aspects of adventure activities in addiction recovery.
In active addiction, many people experience a loss of trust with both self and others. They may have made choices that went against their own personal values or associated with people who did not treat them well.
Adventure activities in recovery may help restore a sense of trust as well as trustworthiness. Through trust-building activities, participants practice honoring their intuition and respecting the decisions of others.
Better Stress Management
When people get into the habit of using a substance to manage stress, removing the drug can leave them without a lot of coping skills. With adventure activities, participants may learn new ways to handle stress. The activities often require physical and mental exercise, which can leave people feeling accomplished and relaxed.
Addiction robs people of the freedom to self-express. People who struggle with substances often report poor mood, low energy, and a lack of interest in previous hobbies. Sessions may help people rediscover the spark that they felt as children or young people.
Develops a Sense of Service
During active addiction, people may carry painful feelings of guilt and shame. They may dislike the way they are behaving, but feel helpless to change their life. With adventure activities, people practice self-forgiveness as well as the art of giving back.
Positive View of Self
The lessons learned in these sessions can help set the stage for a positive self-image that lasts. After treatment, people may desire to make amends to their family or places of work. They may want to further their education, or follow a certain career path. Each of these actions require an internal sense of value and determination.
Do You Need an Experiential Therapy Program in Ohio?
Learning to value the self and others is a lifelong journey. Adventure therapy, which includes things like wilderness therapy and nature therapy, helps set patients up to walk this path with a sense of humility and self-confidence.
At The Bluffs, patients engage in adventure therapy as part of a collaborative care model. They will also have access to drug detoxification, mental health counseling, and cognitive-behavioral therapy sessions. Call The Bluffs today at 850-374-5331 for more information about experiential therapy.