What Is Sound Bath Therapy for Addiction?

Sound bathroom therapy.

What Is Sound Bath Therapy for Addiction?

An individual may experience many health benefits when listening to their preferred genre of music. Music can elevate one’s mood, stimulate memories, lower stress hormones in the body, and even alleviate pain. Listening to calming music can help improve one’s work and study performance. It can even improve a person’s quality of sleep. As it incorporates those benefits, sound bath therapy can be a unique treatment alternative to help individuals with addiction and mental health issues.

Sound baths can provide a deeply meditative experience. These treatments, which incorporate percussive instruments, can have a nurturing and healing effect on one’s mind, body, and spirit. Cultures around the world have long used this therapeutic approach. As it catches on in the Western world, sound baths are becoming a complementary treatment option for individuals seeking a more holistic plan of care.

What Is Sound Bath Therapy?

Although it may sound like a sound bath includes bathing in water of some sort, that’s not the case. Instead, sound bath therapy is a meditative approach in which individuals are bathed in waves of sounds. Instead of bathing in water, a person is gently washed in echoing Zen-like sounds that are intentionally used for therapeutic benefits.

This method is based on the healing effects of sound, which has been verified by research published in the Journal of Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine and other studies. Study participants reported that sound therapies caused increased relaxation, decreased stress, decreased pain, and a decrease in depression and anxiety. They even reported an increase in a sense of faith and spiritual well-being. Other studies have even shown that sound therapy can lower blood pressure.

Although experts don’t know the exact mechanism of its healing effect, there are a few theories. One is that the binaural beats used in sound therapy affect participants’ brainwaves, causing them to move into a more relaxing alpha or theta state. Additionally, it’s thought that sound waves may have actions on the biofield or energy field of the body.

Instruments and Props Used in Sound Bath Sessions

According to the authors of the aforementioned study, these soothing waves can be produced by healing instruments such as gongs, crystal singing bowls, ting-shas, small bells, dorges, and didgeridoo. When used, the metal instruments emit a rich vibration that promotes a powerful sense of relaxation.

People often lie down during a session and different props may be used to make a person comfortable. Depending on an individual’s therapy instructor, props may include yoga mats, pillows, blankets, comfortable clothing, and even eye pillows.

The History Behind Sound Bath Therapy

Sound bath therapy dates back to ancient times. As stated in Integrative Medicine: A Clinicians Journal, Eastern medicine techniques are some of the earliest holistic treatments. Tibetan singing bowls have been utilized by monks in Nepal and Tibet for centuries to promote well-being. The didgeridoo is an ancient instrument that has been used by Australian aboriginal tribes for sound healing for approximately 40,000 years. The gong, as well, has globally captivated many people throughout history. This instrument was used by the Chinese dating way back to the sixth century for cultural, spiritual, and healing purposes.

Benefits of Sound Bath Therapy for Addiction

According to the aforementioned study published in the Journal of Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, several health conditions such as diabetes, addiction, heart disease, and more have all been linked to tension and stress. Stress has been clinically proven to manifest itself in the early stages of addiction recovery. Stress can cause intense mood shifts, trigger cravings, and potentially lead to relapse.

Sound bath therapy increases balance on all levels to promote healing in an individual facing troubles with substance use disorder (SUD). The holistic practice promotes an individual’s self-esteem by allowing for a healthy emotional means of expression. Listening to the combination of low-frequency and high-intensity vibrations from healing instruments can induce positive psychological effects.

Benefits of sound bath therapy may include:

  • Increased self-control: Overcoming SUD requires strength and ongoing dedication.
  • Reduced stress and anxiety: When in early recovery, it can be stressful for an individual to start over and make positive changes.
  • Lowered physical pain: Withdrawal symptoms can cause body aches, heart palpitations, fevers, etc.

Getting Started

Taking time to research a few different addiction healthcare facilities can improve the odds of a successful recovery and greatly improve an individual’s quality of life. Sharing a complete round of history with a preferred mental healthcare professional can ensure a healthy treatment plan in moving forward. When other treatment attempts fail or an individual prefers a more natural holistic approach, sound bath therapy can be a very effective solution. This unique form of treatment can make recovery more enjoyable and even more likely to succeed.