Heroin addiction is continuing problem affecting the health and financial stability of society. It is well known that professional treatment is the best way to manage this terrible disease, but there is a new trend of adding exercise to already established treatment methods. What do you need to know about exercise and heroin addiction treatment?
Benefits of Exercise
Many people are aware that exercise has numerous benefits to overall health and well-being. While this is important for those recovering from the health damages of an addiction to heroin, it is not the only benefit of exercise in heroin addiction treatment.
In fact, according to the National Library of Medicine, there are is considerable evidence that exercise aids people in substance about treatment in a number of ways. These include:
- Reducing cravings
- Relieving stress, depression, and anxiety
- Promoting abstinence and a healthy lifestyle
- Coping with cravings and triggers
- Preventing relapse
All of these benefits show the importance of exercise in heroin addiction treatment.
How it Works with Heroin Treatment
There has not been enough studies done, or enough evidence produced, to prove that exercise can replace any of the proven treatment methods used in heroin addiction treatment. Therefore, it should be used as an add-on to the more reliable treatments of medication and behavioral therapy.
Best Types of Exercise to Do
While all exercise activities have the potential to provide some benefit to recovering heroin addicts, there are some activities that are more appropriate than others. These are activities that build overall physical fitness and promote a relaxed mental state. This includes:
- Running or walking
- Cycling or Spinning
While these exercises are generally considered best, you should do whatever fits your goals and personality. However, keep in mind that competitive and combative activities may increase stress, reducing its effectiveness in aiding heroin addiction treatment.
Heroin addiction also has a very high relapse rate. The ability of exercise to reduce cravings, stress, and anxiety makes it a very useful tool in coping with triggers.
Since the majority of overdose deaths occur as a result of relapse, exercise shows just how important it can be as part of a comprehensive heroin addiction treatment program.