Music is a gift, one which has the power to change your mood, perception or an experience. There is a plethora of different styles of music, from classical to rock and roll; the music that speaks to you may not speak to another.
There is something out there for everyone, and it is likely that even the most cantankerous of people cannot help but smile when they hear a certain melody. While most people think of music as something that entertains, others are finding that it also has the power to heal—which is especially important for those at the onset of addiction recovery.
Humans are social, feeling and communicative beings that require external stimulation that touches one internally. Those who are struggling will an illness, arguably, necessitate stimuli to help their recovery along. Healing doesn’t just demand doctors, medicine and time. If recovery from any form of malady is to be achieved—a multifaceted regimen is required.
The Orchestra of Recovery
Many of the best addiction treatment recovery centers across the country use various techniques to insure that clients have the highest chance at long term abstinence and a productive life upon completing and leaving treatment. In addition to using evidence-based methods and introducing clients to the 12-Steps or Smart Recovery, effective treatment centers present clients with various modalities to facilitate the healing process.
It is no secret that when someone is in need of recovery they are usually in pretty bad shape. Clients are, more times than not, spiritually bankrupt. Believing that if there is a higher power out there, it has most certainly abandoned them. One of the most important aspects of addiction recovery is connecting (or reconnecting) with the world and energy that coursing in and out of everyone—the spirit that unites us all. Active addiction is an isolated, dark existence; so then, it stands to reason that recovery needs be the exact opposite.
It is for that reason that recovery counselors will encourage clients to open their hearts and minds by way of prayer and/or meditation. Through such mediums, even the most broken of spirits can reunite with the world at large and see that they too, in time, can be free from the bondage of self. Just as a beautiful symphony requires the spectrum of instruments playing in sync, recovery requires the combined effort of everyone working together towards the common goal of living a life free from drugs and alcohol.
…And the Music Heals
It worth pointing out that a number of hospital around the country have begun using alternative therapeutic methods to help patients battle life threatening disorders, such as cancer. ABC News published an article recently called “How Music Therapy Can Lift Body and Soul for Patients.” The piece took a close look at various medical centers that are using music to help their patients heal. For instance:
- Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City has music therapists onsite to help ease pain, expand social connections, and bring peace and comfort to patients.
- Kravis Children’s Hospital at Mount Sinai Hospital, utilizes music therapy to help patients express and cope with their mood, pain and need for sleep.
- Mount Sinai St. Luke’s music therapists help adolescent psychiatric inpatients.
If you are new to recovery, and think that music may help strengthen your coping skills and ease the transitional pain, talk to your counselor about the options available. You may find that music is an invaluable tool when times are hard and you feel urges to use drugs or alcohol. There isn’t a single formula for achieving recovery, and sometimes thinking outside the box is a must.