Addiction is a complex affliction affecting tens of millions of people in the United States alone. The US Food and Drug Administration has recently called for certain opioids to be recalled from the market and pulled from shelves after prescription pill abuse has led to an increase of HIV infections and deadly overdoses. As you can probably imagine, addiction costs our country hundreds of billions of dollars – and countless lives – each and every year. It is imperative that we find new ways to facilitate healing from addiction.
The good news for addicts, those in recovery, and their families is that many, many people are finding a new hope for addiction recovery. This newfound hope is not a pill you can take, nor is it some new type of twelve-step program. It is an ancient spiritual practice from India that you’ve probably already heard of – and have possibly even tried.
That’s right! The ancient practice of yoga is now being used to treat addiction. Yoga is nothing new. It’s been practiced for thousands of years in Eastern cultures as a deeply spiritual, healing practice.
In recent decades, yoga has gained mainstream popularity throughout the Western world. There’s a good chance that you probably know someone who practices it. Perhaps you’ve even taken a yoga class yourself.
Yoga and the Twelve Steps
The healing benefits of yoga have been shown to include: improved flexibility, stronger muscles, improved health, reduced stress, and more. But can yoga really bring healing to those who are struggling to break free from the grip of addiction?
According to some experts, the answer is: yes! Yoga provides spiritual guidance and connection to a higher power. In addition, yoga helps soothe many of the withdrawal symptoms addicts experience during addiction recovery. Yoga can be practiced on its own or in conjunction with a twelve-step program.
Yoga and Meditation: The Perfect Pair for Healing
Author and spiritual leader, Gabrielle Bernstein, has become popular for sharing her own journey of addiction recovery. Crediting her spirituality with saving her life, Bernstein recommends using Kundalini Yoga and this specific type of Kundalini Meditation to find healing on the other side of addiction.
In addition, Yoga Journal has created a specific yoga routine for those who are in the process of healing from addiction. After completing this meditative movement practice, participants are encouraged to write down thoughts, emotions or memories that come to mind.
The Key to Healing from Addiction?
Whether we suffer from addictions or not, we all have our own wounds that need healing. Yoga is a great method for finding inner peace and wisdom to facilitate such healing, even when healing from something as challenging as addiction. Through practicing yoga and meditation, it is possible to become reacquainted with who you really are. You can regain your power, your wisdom, and your life after addiction. By developing a yoga practice—especially when used along with a twelve-step program—you can begin to heal old traumas, let go of suffering, and truly transform your life for the better. Good luck!
About the Author
After seeing a family member struggle with addiction, David created HeroinAddict.info as a resource for addicts and their loved ones to find help and gain insight into the addiction and overdose epidemic. He has found yoga to be an effective means of facilitating healing from addiction.