Each person entering treatment for mental illness and addiction comes from a different background and culture. Their experiences may vary greatly from the next individual. As a result, clinicians must get innovative when developing treatment and recovery plans. Since innovative approaches to treatment can vary greatly based on the clinician’s expertise and the client’s needs, it’s important to understand the basics.
Just as clients all have their own needs, preferences, and specialties, clinicians do too. Clinicians get to use their creativity, training, and strengths to come up with the most effective treatment for their clients. Sometimes the appropriate treatment is a technique that is simple, tried, and true. Other times, clinicians might have to combine several different approaches to achieve the desired outcome for the client.
When clinicians are establishing a proper treatment plan for their clients, they will look at the whole picture and determine what type of techniques will be most beneficial for the client.
Some clinicians may lean toward a traditional approach. These types of techniques are usually strongly backed by evidence and the clinicians most likely have received an overall positive response from clients. While the types of techniques used will vary based on the clinician’s expertise and the client’s needs, traditional treatments could include:
These treatments can be used on their own or in combination with other techniques. The effectiveness and frequency of these treatments will depend on the client’s needs and preferences.
Some clinicians may prefer to take a more creative and holistic route to help the client heal. The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) explains that about 30% of American adults utilize health practices that fall outside the scope of what is considered traditional Western medicine. These practices typically fall into one of two categories: complementary or alternative treatment. Complementary and alternative treatments are defined by the NCCIH as follows:
- If a non-mainstream approach is used together with conventional medicine, it’s considered “complementary.”
- If a non-mainstream approach is used in place of conventional medicine, it’s considered “alternative.”
The NCCIH specifies these complementary techniques as psychologically helpful:
There is also an additional category of treatment that encapsulates the use of traditional and complementary treatments – integrative health. The NCCIH explains that “Integrative health aims for well-coordinated care among different providers and institutions by bringing conventional and complementary approaches together to care for the whole person.” Integrative health’s purpose is to treat the whole body, rather than just the symptoms.
For example, if a client has a symptom of chest pain and is only given pain medicine, the pain might subside temporarily but will ultimately return. The root of the problem needs to be determined and treated before the client can get lasting, healthy relief.
Root causes can also be applied to those who are receiving treatment for substance use disorder (SUD). The client’s SUD could be a symptom of an underlying issue that hasn’t been addressed fully. An untreated anxiety disorder, childhood trauma, or depression could be the driving force behind the client’s SUD. If the client is consistently only treated for SUD while the root problem is ignored, it’s easy to understand why they might relapse.
While some clinicians may lean toward traditional treatment techniques, many also recognize the need for innovative techniques. These techniques help address the aspects that make humans unique: mind, body, and spirit. Innovative techniques can complement traditional approaches very well. When combined, they can help the client heal fully. Some examples of innovative treatment approaches include:
Overall, multiple pathways to healing exist. Some clients need an integrative health path, while others may see the best results with traditional techniques. Facilities like Sage Recovery individualize the treatment plans. This provides the best care for each client. The client needs to feel confident in the approach to healing. Ultimately, an individualized treatment plan will help them stay healthy long-term.
Innovative treatments can help people with mental illness and addiction heal. No person is the same, and treatment shouldn’t be either. Here at Sage Recovery, we offer innovative approaches to treatment that cater to your individual needs. Our clinicians are trained in a variety of therapeutic techniques, including reiki, therapeutic yoga, equine therapy, art therapy, music therapy, play therapy, DBT, EMDR, and much more. We believe there are multiple pathways to healing. When you’re ready, we want to help you on the path to recovery. We have compassionate, friendly staff who can provide you with further information on our treatment programs. Reach out to us at (512) 306-1394 to discover how Sage Recovery can lead you toward a better life.