Mental health conditions are surprisingly common in the United States, although many people do not seek treatment for them. Medication and psychotherapy are some of the most effective treatments for managing mental health disorders. However, more mental health professionals now realize the benefits of alternative therapies like yoga therapy.
At Serenity House Detox & Recovery Houston, we understand the value of yoga therapy as part of a mental health treatment plan. Our dual diagnosis treatments incorporate medication, psychotherapy, and yoga therapy for a comprehensive program that addresses all areas of your life. To experience the difference alternative therapies can make in your life, reach out to us today at 866.516.8356.
How Are Yoga and Mental Health Related?
If you have never tried yoga before, you may be wondering how yoga and mental health are correlated. For those who have attempted yoga or engaged in a regular yoga practice, you know how calm and relaxed your mind and body feel after a session. While yoga can impart immediate feelings of serenity, there is more to yoga that can directly impact your mental health.
Here is an example of how yoga can support good mental health after a single session:
- You drive home after a stressful day at work in rush hour traffic. Your anxiety creeps up, and your heart rate increases.
- You find a yoga video on YouTube and complete a 30-minute session when you arrive home.
- After your yoga session, you notice that your muscles feel less tense, and your mind feels calmer. Your heart rate has slowed down, and your heartbeat is steadier.
One of the most significant impacts of yoga is increased heart rate variability (HRV), which means that the space between heartbeats is longer. A slower, steadier heart rate results in a more relaxed mind and body. You will notice that when you feel stressed or anxious, your heart rate can be rapid or erratic, making it nearly impossible to have a calm mind and body. By simply increasing your HRV, yoga can help mitigate the symptoms of mental health conditions.
What Are the Benefits of Yoga Therapy for Mental Health?
In addition to an increased heart rate variability, yoga therapy offers plenty of other benefits for mental health. In fact, many doctors now recommend their patients adopt a regular yoga practice to support their mental health. Some of the benefits of incorporating yoga into your life include:
- Emotional regulation – If you struggle with mood swings, depression, anxiety, or PTSD, you know how quickly your mood can escalate or dip, sometimes with very little provocation. Yoga can help smooth out these mood fluctuations so you can feel more balanced.
- Increased energy – Yoga emphasizes your breathing along with the poses. By encouraging slower, deeper breathing, yoga supports optimal brain oxygenation, which induces calm energy. This calmness can help alleviate lethargy associated with depressive episodes.
- Lower cortisol levels – Cortisol levels rise in response to stress, and people with mental health conditions like PTSD tend to have chronically high cortisol levels. Practicing yoga has been shown to help support a healthy stress response, which helps keep cortisol levels in the healthy range.
- Relief from anxiety symptoms – Anxiety often involves rumination and endless mind chatter about fears and worries. Yoga therapy that includes breathwork helps you learn to focus on the present moment and let go of unhelpful thoughts that run through your mind.
These are just a few of the benefits of yoga therapy for mental health. Adding yoga to your daily regimen along with other alternative therapies like meditation and breathing techniques can help you manage mental health conditions more effectively, so they do not interfere with your overall well-being.
Begin Healing at Serenity House Detox & Recovery Houston
At Serenity House Detox & Recovery Houston, true recovery involves comprehensive treatment. Our detox programs include yoga therapy, chiropractic treatment, medication, and psychotherapy for the most well-rounded approach to healing. Give us a call today at 866.516.8356 to begin your path to a healthy recovery.