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How is Adventure Therapy Used in Addiction Treatment?

The topic of wellness has become more popular in the past decade as many companies try to sell products designed to help people feel and look their best. But real “wellness” is something that doesn’t come from products you can buy.

Real wellness is the result of caring for your body, mind, and spirit and working towards lifelong mental and physical health. For people who live with substance abuse or addiction, it is especially important to take care of their body, mind, and relationships. During and after addiction treatment, it is important to find meaningful ways to stay engaged and committed to recovery.

In recent years, holistic therapies, including outdoor recreation and adventure therapy, have become more popular in addiction treatment programs. As we begin to understand the spiritual, social, and mental harm caused by addiction, it has become clear that treatment must include care for the whole self.

Adventure therapy is an exciting and engaging aspect of some addiction treatment programs. When used along with other evidence-based treatments, adventure therapy can offer a more complete, satisfying, and long-lasting recovery from addiction.

What is Adventure Therapy?

Adventure therapy uses outdoor recreation and activities in a therapeutic way, often as part of a treatment program. It is often used to treat substance abuse, addiction, and mental health conditions including:

Adventure therapy was developed in the 1960s as a way to use the energizing and healing power of the natural world.[1] Today, people participate in adventure therapy in addiction treatment and recovery.

Adventure therapy can improve people’s self-confidence and help manage stress. It can help people shift their focus and find new enjoyment and meaning in their lives in recovery. Used alongside other evidence-based therapies, it can be effective at helping people achieve sobriety.

What Are Some Common Kinds of Adventure Therapy?

If you are looking for the perfect place to seek adventure or rediscover the mystery of life, South Florida is the perfect destination. South Florida has a large, active community of people in recovery. It is a wonderful location to get the addiction treatment you need.

One of the reasons South Florida is a perfect place to be in recovery is its beautiful natural areas. The state has varying climates and natural features, making it the perfect place to participate in adventure therapy.

Some common adventure therapy activities include:

  • Snorkeling
  • Kayaking
  • Fishing
  • Horseback riding
  • Paintball
  • Hiking
  • Paddleboarding
  • Rock climbing
  • Camping

Adventure therapy is often offered in a group setting, but it can also be used within families or by individuals. Activities are facilitated by therapeutic adventure specialists and can be adapted to your unique needs.

How to Use Adventure Therapy in Addiction Treatment

Adventure therapy can be integrated into an addiction treatment program. In some cases, it may be offered by the treatment facility. In others, you may need to seek adventure therapy from other local, trained professionals.

Adventure therapy can be as casual or intense as you want it to be. Some people go hiking from time to time while others try a new activity each week. You may find one activity that makes you feel good and stick to it for the rest of your life, or you may just enjoy moving your body and expanding your horizons during treatment.

Addiction is never cured and must be managed for life. Adventure therapy can be a valuable part of lifelong recovery. You may choose to engage in solo adventures or join a group of like-minded adventurers. Either way, continuing to participate in adventure therapy after treatment can be a meaningful way of staying engaged in recovery. It can also help manage mental health conditions and reduce the risk for relapse.[2]

Addiction and treatment can be full of challenges, discomfort, and difficult emotions. The goal of adventure therapy is to help people find a new passion and excitement for life. Trying new activities and learning a new skill can give people a sense of self-confidence.

Addiction often takes the focus away from every other part of a person’s life. Their health, relationships, goals, and joy are slowly chipped away by the demands of their addiction. Adventure therapy empowers people to engage in their life, to focus outward, and to find a spark of joy again.

Find Help for Yourself or a Loved One

Living with substance abuse or addiction can feel very lonely. It can feel hard to imagine that life could ever feel different. The team at the Mandala Healing Center wants you to know that anyone can recover from addiction if they have the right care and support. That’s why we offer a range of holistic, comprehensive treatment options that are designed to care for the whole person.

If you or someone you love is living with addiction, don’t wait another day for the treatment you need and deserve. We would love to talk to you about our holistic treatment programs and how to get started on the path towards a healthier, more fulfilling future. Call today to get started.