Researchers have found a link between meditation and addiction, indicating that mindfulness techniques are effective in minimizing addictive behaviors. Meditation requires individuals to manage their thoughts and relax the body, which helps dispel the stress that often triggers addiction. Meditation can alleviate negative thought patterns, promote clarity, and help individuals see the present moment and the true nature of their thoughts. Research also shows that meditation changes the brain structure after practicing for a period of time, with long-term recovery becoming a viable result. This is why LVRC stresses meditation as a therapeutic modality within a client’s treatment plan. Mindfulness in addiction treatment helps our clients notice cravings before they take hold; it helps them experience cravings without acting on them; and it promotes an overall sense of well-being that is important to recovery.
When Considering Mindfulness and Addiction, Review the Options
When developing a holistic treatment plan that addresses all aspects of an individual, we consider the link between mindfulness and addiction, and we help our clients find meditation options that are comfortable for them. One can meditate in silence, with music, reading various spiritual or affirming passages, or by simply quieting the mind and noticing thoughts. Breathing mediation prompts individuals to notice their breathing by counting each breath. Chanting words or songs can also keep the mind focused.
Research suggests that combining meditation with physical exercise can also be beneficial. For instance, yoga has been shown effective in addiction recovery, as well as the use of Tai Chi or Chi Kung (Qui Gong). At LVRC, we frequently suggest adding physical exercise to a client’s treatment plan. Addiction relief is often a result.
Twelve-Step Programs, Meditation, and Addiction
LVRC includes twelve-step programs and mindfulness meditation techniques in our treatment plans because we have seen the benefits of both. Our clients don’t have to claim a religious affiliation or belief to practice mindfulness meditation or the Twelve Steps. They simply have to have the willingness to try new ways of thinking, behaving, and relating to the world. Our programs are designed to support clients through these difficult changes so that they can start anew.