The Healing Power of Mindfulness Meditation when Recovering from Addiction


The Healing Power of Mindfulness Meditation when Recovering from Addiction

We have all heard at one time or another how useful meditation can be in terms of reducing stress and anxiety but most people don't realize how helpful meditation can be managing recovery from the use of drugs and alcohol dependency. Relapse is one of the biggest concerns for individuals recovering from substance abuse disorders and meditation can make a big difference for a person maintaining abstinence during their recovery.


Addiction is a disease that never goes away, this is an illness that has to be managed every day in a person's life. With time, determination and the right tools the symptoms of addiction gets easier and easier that's why finding successful treatment is so important.

No two people suffering from addiction are the same. We all have our own unique personalities, no one's health is exactly the same, and everyone's life is different. Even when it comes to substance abuse, addiction and recovery, no two people are alike that's why good treatment centers offer a wide range of treatments and their treatment programs are individualized to meet the needs of each patient.

What people suffering from addiction do share is stress, anxiety, depression, tension and insomnia. Medications like antidepressants and sleep aids do help but it's extremely important not to rely on them or misuse them which many people do during their recovery from alcohol or drug addiction.

When a person is working toward recovery, maintaining abstinence is not that easy. None of us can completely control the stress and tension in our lives and unfortunately emotional situations many times come without warning and when a person relapses during their recovery it's due to stress, depression and anxiety. Meditation is an alternative form of therapy that can not only help to prevent relapse from drug and alcohol abuse but can also help with recovery from other forms of dependency.

It's just as hard to manage recovery from eating disorders, compulsive gambling, tobacco addiction and shopping or sex addiction. Stress, depression and tension can affect a person's sobriety even if they have successfully managed their recovery for years. It's important to take advantage of every helpful tool available when managing your recovery from substance abuse, problem gambling, eating disorders, tobacco addiction or any other form of addiction.

There are many types of meditation and most of them came from ancient religious and spiritual traditions many years ago. There are many different benefits meditation can be used for which include physical relaxation, calmness, to cope with illnesses, reduce pain, and to relieve stress and anxiety and improve a person's overall health and wellness. Always remember that meditation isn't a replacement for conventional care or instead of seeing your physician due to medical problems. But to relieve tension, reduce anxiety and for calmness, meditation can help a person relax and rethink their need to repeat negative behaviors associated with addiction.

Mindfulness Meditation

Mindfulness is a form of meditation that requires the individual to focus their minds on the present moment. When a person is being mindful they're aware of their actions and thoughts in the present moment without judging them. With this form of meditation you're aware of your senses, you're aware of your breathing, but you're not trying to analyze them. You're just aware in the moment which develops stability, inner calmness and relaxation.

A news article from the United States Department of Defense talks about the benefits of mindfulness meditation being a possible option to help soldiers deal with the stress due to deployment. Mindfulness meditation is also used to treat PTSD which is Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and personality disorders by many psychotherapists around the world according to the article.

In our normal daily lives our minds wander continuously from thought to thought, past thoughts and future thoughts but rarely on the present moment. Getting lost in thoughts of the past can be extremely dangerous especially for people recovering from drug, alcohol, or gambling addiction. Those thoughts are triggers that can cause anxiety, stress, depression, relapse and even fear. It's very hard to control our thoughts and keep them from wandering and taking us to negative places in our minds unless we're aware and prepared.

Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) is a program that was developed by Kabat-Zinn back in 1979 to teach patients with chronic physical and mental health problems how to improve their lives. Now mindfulness based stress reduction is being utilized in some treatment programs for addiction.

Practicing mindfulness meditation daily, several times a day can bring calmness, relaxation, and peacefulness. The better we get at this form of meditation if our minds start to wander throughout the day and take us to negative places, it makes us more aware that we're doing it and we're more apt to turn our thoughts around and become aware of the present. Being aware of the present can help us dismiss negative thoughts and behaviors and keep us focused on positive choices and energy.

Without some form of coping skills emotional stress can and does cause relapse for many people. Many Holistic Treatment Centers provide meditation in their programs to help recovering substance users relax, reduce stress and anxiety and become aware of their present instead of their past. Meditation is a wonderful tool that can benefit all areas of a person's life by releasing negative and unhealthy thoughts, behaviors and emotions.

A study that was done not long ago shows that the practice of mindfulness meditation is associated with changes in the parts of the brain that involve memory, learning and emotion. Research that was done in the past has shown that meditation may even reduce chronic pain.

Normal daily life can be stressful enough and with the economy the way it is people are suffering from anxiety and depression more now than ever. Mindful Meditation can benefit your life, reduce relapse from addictive behaviors, and improve your well-being, it's something we all can afford because it doesn't cost a dime.

Websites Used
NCCAM
NCBI

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