Mind and body approaches for substance use disorders

National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health
Publication date:
16 April 2018


Mindfulness-based approaches have shown some success when applied to the treatment of substance abuse and addiction. In part,these aproaches attempt to decrease the impact of negative affect, which is thought to serve as a trigger for substance use. Improving distress tolerance is an important aspect of mindfulness-based substance abuse treatment. These approaches can be part of a comprehensive addiction treatment plan that includes behavioural modifications, and may include pharmaceuticals to decrease cravings, group therapy, or counseling.

This issue of the NCCIH digest provides a summary of current research on mind and body approaches, such as acupuncture, hypnotherapy, mindfulness meditation, music therapy, and yoga for substance use disorders.