Treatment Therapy Profiles: Adventure Therapy

It may be a left field way to think about, but drug treatment can be viewed in the same light as taking an education course. As the length of the course goes forward, it will be apparent that some learn differently than others. Some may be more hands-on and want to get dirty while others may learn better through visual or audio aids. To put it in simple terms–a “one size fits all” approach will not benefit all who seek to learn and grow. This is especially true when it comes to getting the most out of drug treatment.

Traditional Drug Treatment Won’t Work For Everybody

Many addiction treatment therapy centers adopt a 12-Step based treatment approach in working with many different types of addicts. These drug treatment programs have helped many break free from their addiction because of the effective combination of therapy, peer support and encouragement, aftercare programs and involvement in support groups such as AA and NA. While 12-Step based programs work for many who struggle with addiction, there are those who may not get what they need out of these programs in order to achieve long-term recovery.

One group in particular are adolescents and young adults. The structure of traditional drug treatment may be too confining and they quickly lose interest. Because a young person’s brain and body are in crucial stages of development, it is important they find a drug treatment option that will work in order to stop the cycle of abuse. While there are many types of addiction therapy to choose from, adventure therapy has been an increasingly popular treatment choice?

What is Adventure Therapy?

camp site at sun down

Adventure therapy is and active and experiential approach to treatment which involves the use of adventure experiences as a way to improve the physical, mental and spiritual health of those young people who struggle with substance abuse. These experiences can include the use of ropes courses, going on wilderness expeditions or other outdoor activities. These activities provide young people the chance to learn basic survival skills and well as effective coping strategies and the important interpersonal skills they will need to apply to lives outside of treatment. These activities are used to complement the counseling the therapy that are used in other types of addiction therapy.

The Components Of Adventure Therapy

There are five main components of adventure therapy and they include the following:

Active Engagement

For those who undergo adventure therapy, they are directly involved in the treatment process and are not idle spectators. They directly participate in group activities and are working cooperatively within the group. By taking a proactive approach and directly participating in their own recovery, they have  accountability for their actions and they can learn more about themselves.

Personal Motivation

In adventure therapy, individuals are motivated to participate in treatment through direct involvement, giving their energy and effort and practicing personal responsibility. As a result, they are able to increase the opportunity for positive experiences and benefits.

Real and Meaningful Experiences

group of women camping

The activities in adventure therapy  will be able to help those in treatment learn the consequences for their actions as well as group and individual accountability. When they actively participate in an activity, they see first-hand how they react to situations and events and learn ways to cope in healthier fashion


man reflecting outdoors

One of the most important elements of adventure-based addiction therapy is being able to progress through treatment and be able to honestly reflect upon his or her experiences during their time in therapy. Doing so will allow those in adventure therapy treatment to learn more about their own individual strengths and weaknesses as well as develop self-awareness.

Activities Are Relevant to Life Experience

In order for the participant to truly benefit from adventure therapy, the lessons learned must be able to be applied to future experiences as well as those from the past.

What are the Benefits of Adventure Therapy?

man having alone time fishing

There are numerous benefits that young people can experience if they undergo adventure therapy treatment. First, the proactive and hands-on nature of adventure therapy can help those who have a tendency to be more introverted, show signs of depression or are otherwise isolated from the community at large. Adventure therapy provides a way for patients to experience recovery on a broader basis. Additionally, adventure therapy is most beneficial for those who enjoy the idea of making a mark on the world while helping those around them.

Another benefit of adventure therapy is that it is extremely versatile and can be used in a variety of applications. Some examples were adventure-based therapy is beneficial are for mental health issues such as depression and anxiety, eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), social phobias and ADHD among others. Adventure therapy can also be seen as an excellent compliment to aftercare programs and 12-Step and other alternative sober support groups.

Much like other addiction therapy programs, adventure therapy allows for active family involvement. Families can go on “private family quests” or work with several other families in a more communal setting. Family involvement is critical in the recovery process and involvement in treatment is needed in order for the addict to return to a more positive and nurturing environment to work their program of recovery. Not only does the addict uncover the roots of their addictive behaviors, the family unit also can address their role in addiction.

There Are Many Choices In Addiction Therapy and Treatment

Every addict has their own unique and specific needs, and a “one size fits all” approach will not work. While you have many choices and options when it comes to drug and alcohol treatment facilities, knowing which programs and facilities that you can turn to and trust can be an overwhelming process. For the best in treatment services, experienced staff and care, look no further that Dream Center for Recovery.

We offer a wide range of addiction therapy services that can be individually tailored to meet your needs. From the moment you enter treatment to the day you leave, our experienced and compassionate staff provides a full continuum of care and will be with you every step of your journey.  Call us toll-free today and break the chains of addiction once and for all.