How Exercise is an Integral Part of Inpatient Drug Rehab
Everyone knows exercise is beneficial in strengthening the body, controlling weight, reducing one’s risk of many diseases and illnesses, and improving one’s mental health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health.” We are also beginning to understand the benefits of physical activity and exercise for drug abuse and addiction treatment. Exercise is becoming an integral part of many inpatient drug rehab programs with impressive results.
Exercise Can Be a Viable Addiction Treatment
Generally, medication and behavioral therapy or counseling are considered to be the traditional treatment options for addiction recovery. But a treatment program does not need to end with these two options––and it shouldn’t. Exercise itself can be a viable treatment option for addiction, and it can help patients in inpatient care begin to make positive changes in their lives.
According to the Behavior Modification journal, “Healthy lifestyle changes may contribute to long-term maintenance of recovery and interventions targeting physical activity, in particular, may be especially valuable as an adjunct to alcohol treatment.” It can also be beneficial for any number of addiction syndromes, helping patients learn many skills that will allow them to have a stronger, more well-rounded recovery.
Rehab also isn’t only about utilizing the methods that treat the addiction and its symptoms directly. The National Institute on Drug Abuse states, “Effective treatment attends to multiple needs of the individual, not just his or her drug abuse,” and health and wellness are a major component of recovery. Exercise can be a wonderful treatment option for patients, and as such, is used in most inpatient rehab facilities.
Why is Exercise in Inpatient Rehab So Important?
For one reason, exercise is necessary because the patient is not able to leave the facility, as their condition is often too severe. Sometimes, inpatient care can last for up to a year or more, so it is important that patients are still able to engage in physical activity and be healthy during this time. It also allows them to create a routine, and doing so is extremely beneficial to recovery.
Learning a new type of exercise can also be very helpful to a patient in inpatient rehab. It can give them something to focus on besides their cravings, withdrawal symptoms, and other issues associated with their addiction. Having this new hobby or routine can also give them a new activity to pursue after their inpatient treatment is over, allowing them to continue what they have learned into their post-treatment recovery phase.
In addition, inpatient care centers often have the means to branch out in the treatment options they offer, more so than outpatient centers. This is because patients stay at the facility and the programs are often more expensive. Therefore, it is important for patients to receive as many positive options as they can, including those that relate to their general wellness and lifestyle.
How Else Can Exercise Benefit an Addict in Inpatient Treatment?
There are many other ways in which exercise can help an addicted individual recover as well as have a better experience during their inpatient treatment. Exercise reduces stress, helps manage sleeping patterns, and builds up confidence: all things individuals in addiction treatment, especially inpatient care, often desperately need.
In addition, many individuals also experience varying degrees of depression during inpatient care. This can stem from the disorder itself, often related to depression the individual may have struggled with in the past, or it can be completely new. Many drugs, like opioids and stimulants, can also cause depression during their withdrawal syndromes. Exercise can be a beneficial treatment for this feeling, helping to treat depression naturally before turning to medication when necessary.
Some individuals begin to feel isolated while in inpatient care, as being away from their families and loved ones can be difficult. Exercise not only combats this isolation biochemically, but it also asks patients to come together in a class-type setting to learn and work together. This type of treatment can help patients with feelings of loneliness by allowing them to interact with the other patients in treatment with them, often in a way that is much easier and more casual than their other interactions, like group therapy, can sometimes be.
Finally, exercise can help those patients who are not as comfortable in talk-therapy work out their feelings of aggression, sadness, frustration, and any others by channeling them into positive, physical activity. Much in the same way that art therapy works, patients can rely on exercise treatments that may make them feel more comfortable with their emotions before they are ready or able to share them in talk-therapy (National Institute on Drug Abuse).
What Types of Exercise Programs are Offered in Inpatient Rehab?
Many inpatient programs offer numerous types of exercise classes, routines, or workshops that patients can take advantage of during their time in treatment. Often, patients are encouraged to give a treatment option or activity like this a try, and if they do not gain anything from the experience, another option can be tried at that point. Some exercise programs generally offered in inpatient drug rehab include:
- Aerobic exercise
- Tai chi
- Dance or movement therapy
- Walking or nature walks
Naturally, some inpatient rehab centers offer other types of exercise routines, programs, or classes for patients when it comes to exercise options, but these are some of the most utilized as well as the most popular.
Exercise Makes a Difference
Whatever type of exercise a person chooses to do in inpatient treatment, it will work to strengthen their recovery and improve their overall mental and physical health. Daily physical activity is always part of a healthy lifestyle, and inpatient care facilities are not only teaching patients how to stop abusing drugs, they are also teaching them how to manage their lives with their overall wellness in mind. Therefore, exercise is a necessary part of any inpatient drug rehab program.
Looking for an Inpatient Drug Rehab Program?
If you want to find an inpatient care facility that utilizes exercise programs as part of its addiction treatment, call 800-681-7369 today. We can help you find the program you seek.