Should ‘Holistic Health’ Have A Place In Clinical Treatment?

Highest Standards, Nationally Recognized:

Holistic Health word cloud

Holistic health focuses on the whole person; not just physical health.  In holistic health, practitioners use a mind/body/spirit approach to treatment.  Does this type of approach have a place in clinical treatment?  If we truly want to heal what ails us, clinical treatment should encompass the whole of the person including the mind and the spirit.

Treatment for substance abuse typically focuses on a person’s physical and psychological dependence on drugs or alcohol.  The goal of treatment is to treat the addiction.  People will learn new coping skills in how to live a life without drugs or alcohol.  They may form social relationships through the fellowship of 12-step meetings.  They may also gain insight into their patterns of behavior or psychological issues surrounding the addiction.

Holistic health is relatively new to the substance abuse field as professionals are understanding more about the mind/body/spirit connection.  There are many parts to substance abuse recovery.  The body is affected by chemicals, but so is the mind and the human spirit.  Holistic health should be an option in substance abuse treatment.

When one stops to think about all of the people hurt by addiction, the loss of the self, the denial of spirituality, the lack of control in the mind, the pending stress associated with sobriety, holistic health needs to be focus on treatment.  Through holistic health, addicts in recovery can learn how to properly take care of themselves from a whole body approach.  It would be beneficial for addicts to learn how to care for their bodies through good nutrition and exercise.  Taking walks is also a good way to cleanse the mind.  Walking has both physical and mental benefits.  Teaching addicts to meditate and progressively relax the mind through deep breathing, has tremendous benefit on the mind and spirit.

Once the addict leaves treatment, they will need to have the skills to cope with life.  These skills can be taught in treatment and include stress reduction techniques, understanding triggers that can cause relapse, job skills, financial skills, social skills, asking for help, and finding spiritual peace.  The addict is a whole person with varying degrees of need.  If only the physical needs of the person are addressed in treatment, then treatment is not supporting the person holistically.  It would be far more effective to teach the skills that not only guide them through the first stages of treatment, but to provide them with the skills that will last a lifetime.


Recovery can last a lifetime. Avalon Malibu strives to equip every client with the tools they need for maintaining recovery in mind, body, and spirit. Our residential treatment programs for primary mental health and substance use disorders provide an environment of serenity and compassionate care. Call us today for a confidential assessment and more information on our programs: (888) 958-7511

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