In 1956, alcoholism was classified as a disease by the American Medical Association. Suddenly addiction was an illness, like heart disease or diabetes, and it would stand to reason that it could be treated like any biological illness. While this classification did much to improve public understanding of substance abuse and addiction, it had an unintended consequence: it led to a reductionist view of addiction, and the importance of hands-on leadership in addiction treatment began to be overlooked.

Today, a growing body of research shows that while addiction has some roots in the genetic makeup of its sufferers, there is much more to the disorder than meets the eye.1 It takes a dedicated, hands-on leader to make a lasting difference in the lives of those seeking recovery.

Holistic Hands-on Leadership in Addiction Treatment

The old model of addiction treatment, with its view of addiction as just another disease, tended to rely heavily on medication as a primary method of dealing with addiction. However, a hands-on leader knows that a holistic approach—one that focuses on the whole person, and not just the addiction—is the best option to address the root of the problem. A whole-person view takes such diverse factors as diet, home life, level of self-awareness, history of past trauma and available coping skills into account, and medicates only sparingly.

Focus on Essential Life Skills

For many people in recovery, a lack of some essential life skills played a significant role in the development of their addiction. For many others, the addiction itself disrupts normal functioning in everyday life. Hands-on leadership in addiction treatment with a focus on the whole self can help people learn to function normally again, teaching the skills needed to cope with stress, hold a job, interact with family, and avoid potential craving triggers long into the future, all while tailoring these lessons to the individual.

Therapies That Work for the Individual

Addiction treatment is not a one-size-fits-all scenario. Taking on a new hobby often means the difference between long-term success and relapse, so a variety of alternative therapies is key to any treatment program. From yoga and art therapies to horseback riding and swimming, just about anything that brings a sense of peace and focus can help those in recovery to find a more positive outlet for their emotions. Individual and group therapy, especially under the guidance of a caring and actively involved leader, are additional holistic therapies that are vital to recovery.2

Hands-on leadership in addiction treatment takes a holistic approach, valuing each individual as unique, teaching skills that work best for each recovering person, and getting to the root of the problem rather than simply treating the symptoms. At Casa Nuevo Vida, we understand the need for hands-on leadership in addiction treatment. If you or a loved one is suffering in the grip of an addiction, contact us today to find out how we can help you begin to heal and build a brighter future for yourself.