Benefits of Wilderness Therapy for Addiction and Substance Abuse

Substance abuse in one form or another has long been with us. But then so too has the calming and inspiring influence of time in the wilderness.

Young people with substance abuse are in need of much help. There are a variety of programs and services available and one which is proving highly effective is that located in a wilderness surrounds. The stillness, the beauty and the isolation of the great outdoors have long been used by great people and unknowns as a means of re-charging their batteries.

Today the help needed to overcome substance abuse and alcohol addiction is firmly on offer in wilderness therapy programs.

One of the major steps in reaching recovery is to discover and believe in a power greater than ourselves. And then the secret is to turn yourself over to this greater power and let it help you recover and become a better person.

Through wilderness therapy the resident gets a picture of the world around us, of our small but important role to play in the greater picture. This means each resident discovers more about self. Their substance abuse takes a backward seat as each young person concentrates on new and different activities.

Psychologists have found that people who venture into the wilderness are affected by their surrounds. But it is not a sudden change but rather a gradual one yet with deep effects and influence.

Drugs and alcohol have played a large part in the lives of these troubled teens. These substances have been a crutch upon which they have relied. In the wilderness the crutch is no longer required. The challenge of the task is when the majestic wilderness takes over their thinking and actions. Their lives are re-focused and helped.

There are so many activities to usefully occupy the time of the camp inmates. Putting up a tent, carrying a pack, crossing rivers and climbing mountains, gathering wood and building a fire then cooking your own meal. These are new and challenging experiences for most if not all the addicted young people. They learn new skills, gather pride in their achievements and do away with their substance abuse ways.

One of the biggest losses any substance abuser has is that of relationships. Their friends fall away from this dangerous activity. Now in the wilderness they discover a whole new group of friends. They work and play together and relationships are formed. What a wonderful benefit to have solid friendships and ones which can continue once the stay in the wilderness is over.

The therapy sessions have massive benefits. The young people learn what damage is done to their mind and body from substance abuse. They learn the triggers which cause them to seek out their drug of choice. And they learn the strategies to help them turn away from their addiction. A stay in a wilderness therapy program offers many powerful and long-lasting benefits.

There are many therapeutic programs on offer but when you add the healing power of nature you have a wonderful cure-all for a serious problem.

Here are additional resources you might be interested in:

Wilderness Camp Therapy Programs

Do Wilderness Programs for Teens Really Work?

Are Wilderness Programs for Troubled Teens?