Why Equine Therapy Is Useful in a Marijuana Addiction Treatment Program

Why Equine Therapy Is Useful in a Marijuana Addiction Treatment Program

There is a range of treatment options available to those who suffer from mental health disorders. In conjunction with detox programs, talk therapy, and support groups, many people choose to participate in other forms of treatment. Equine therapy is an available treatment option that has been successful in the treatment of disorders like marijuana addiction.

Marijuana and Psychological Addiction

One of the common misconceptions about marijuana abuse is that it cannot lead to addiction. While many people use marijuana recreationally without ever developing an addiction, dependence and psychological addiction still remain a valid concern. According to a 1994 study by Anthony, Warner, and Kessler, an estimated 9% of marijuana users become dependent. This develops mainly as a psychological dependence due to the effects of the drug.

Marijuana users who experience psychological addiction often find that they need the drug to feel comfortable in a social setting. In this case, it serves as a way to reduce social anxiety. Others who develop a psychological addiction become dependent on the drug simply to cope with stress. These users feel increased levels of stress and anxiety when they are not using marijuana, and feel overwhelmingly drawn to use it to reduce those feelings. Many people with psychological marijuana addictions forget how to apply healthy coping techniques in times of stress.

What is Equine Therapy?

Equine therapy involves the utilization of horses to treat a variety of disorders. It has been shown to be beneficial in the treatment of many physical health disorders, but is also useful in the treatment of psychological disorders, including addictions. Through equine therapy, many different lessons and values can be learned. Working with horses allows people to focus on tasks, be attentive to mood changes, and become mentally present about their actions.

Other traits that are learned through equine therapy include self-esteem, self-confidence, work ethic, and communication skills. In some exercises of equine therapy, goals serve as a motivation to learn. Positive reinforcement of achieved goals can boost self-perception and work ethic. The gentle interaction between the client and horse builds on non-verbal communication skills, as horses are greatly receptive to non-verbal behavior. Such skills translate well to interpersonal communication.

Equine Therapy and Marijuana Addiction

For those suffering from marijuana addiction, equine-assisted psychotherapy could be a very beneficial part of treatment. Psychotherapy is one of the most valuable parts of addiction treatment, particularly for those whose addictions are not physical but are psychological. Equine assisted psychotherapy therefore becomes a great option for those addicted to marijuana.

Learned social skills and self-confidence contribute to lowered daily anxiety, therefore reducing the addict’s drive to use marijuana. Through equine therapy, addicts can learn positive coping skills as well, so that they can respond favorably when stressful situations do arise.

Get Help for Marijuana Addiction

If you or someone you know has become addicted to marijuana, call our toll-free helpline today to find the right addiction treatment for you. Our admissions coordinators are available 24 hours a day to answer any questions you might have about marijuana addiction treatment.