Amend Treatment utilizes a holistic approach to mental health. But what does that mean?
To us, a holistic approach to mental health refers to a multidimensional path toward patient well-being.
It means exploring the sum of the parts in each case and employing a variety of concurrent, collaborative treatment methods. Collaborative, in the sense that mental healthcare is often integrative, relying on the expertise and services of different healthcare providers rather than a single, primary care provider.
While holistic medicine is ancient, it can be contextualized in modern medicine through the biopsychosocial model of health. The causes and contributing factors of numerous physical and mental health issues can be examined from biological, psychological, and social perspectives.
This includes everything from physical exposure and traumatic experiences to genetic predisposition, parental involvement, and socioeconomic stress.
Examining a single case from different angles provides a team of healthcare providers and mental health professionals with a clearer, more coherent picture of an individual’s life and the circumstances contributing to their symptoms.
This, in turn, informs the creation of an individualized treatment plan, which may encompass medication, talk therapy, physical therapy, group therapy, recreational therapy, and more.
In this newsletter, we at Amend Treatment want to highlight and encourage a better understanding of how a holistic approach to mental healthcare can be more effective – and deeply practical – in the treatment of mental health problems, and emphasize the value of comprehensive treatment.
Exploring the Mind-Body Connection
The emergence of managed care has highlighted the advantages of a multidisciplinary treatment approach.
The holistic approach to mental health begins with the link between physical and mental health symptoms and recognizing that a comprehensive treatment of mental health issues often requires a treatment of concurrent or related physical health problems, from chronic pain to sleep deprivation, dietary issues, and much more.
Conditions such as major depressive disorder, anxiety disorders, and stress disorders benefit significantly from treatment plans that encompass a person’s physical and psychological health history. These plans utilize various modalities to address the intricate relationships between mental and physical health factors.
Maintaining a positive outlook during treatment can expedite recovery and enhance outcomes. Conversely, harboring negative feelings about recovery prospects can impede healing and exacerbate pain. Profound stress can physically impact the heart, lungs, and overall body. Improved emotional well-being can positively influence physical well-being.
Talk therapy assists individuals in navigating emotional and physical stress stemming from reduced hand function and chronic pain. Learning relaxation techniques or new coping mechanisms through group therapy sessions enhances life quality, pain management, and addresses co-occurring mental health issues post-traumatic injury, such as depression, anxiety, sleep disorders, and post-traumatic stress.
For instance, traumatic physical injuries commonly receive both physical and mental therapy. When there is nerve damage and limited coordination, intensive post-surgical therapy aids the brain in establishing new pathways as nerves heal, leading to improved limb function.
While conditions like depression and anxiety can be treated through therapy and medication, they also respond well to experiential therapies, yoga, equine therapy, and other animal-assisted therapies. Treating related physical health conditions, especially chronic health issues, further complements the holistic approach to mental health care.
More Than an Island
The significance of social health and its impact on an individual’s physical and emotional well-being is frequently underestimated. The World Health Organization emphasizes the role of social determinants in mental health, particularly protective factors that mitigate the risk of mental health problems. These factors encompass positive social interactions, healthy work relationships, secure neighborhoods, a sense of community, and trust in society.
A dissection of these social elements, such as familial issues, a lack of social connections, adversarial work environments, deficient relationship skills, and poor communication abilities, often serve as predictors of mental health challenges.
Addressing these issues via a holistic treatment approach may involve fostering interpersonal skills, engaging in group and family therapy sessions, and participating in guided group activities. Beyond their impact on social status, enhancing communication and coexistence capabilities establishes a foundation for sustained emotional support post-treatment.
Coupling Emotional and Spiritual Well-being
Incorporating spiritual practices into mental healthcare can offer significant benefits. A review of existing literature indicates that integrating practices like meditation and group support activities can have a positive impact on health behaviors, including treatment compliance and diet. Furthermore, such practices can enhance outcomes in both physical and mental health conditions, such as heart disease and mood disorders.
Recognizing spirituality as an extension of the biopsychosocial model provides healthcare providers with an additional dimension within a holistic treatment plan. For instance, mindfulness, initially rooted in meditative teachings, found its way into Western psychiatry and has been effectively integrated into modern therapeutic frameworks like mindfulness-based cognitive therapy and dialectical behavioral therapy.
Moreover, spirituality enables individuals to reframe their thoughts positively. Across various belief systems, a common theme emerges—the notion that challenges can lead to personal growth, serve as trials, or offer a path to enlightenment. Such spiritual concepts can act as constructive coping mechanisms within a comprehensive approach to mental health.
Tying it Together
Holistic treatments for mental health conditions extend beyond symptom management. They acknowledge that a person’s mental state is influenced by various aspects of their life. Physical health, encompassing factors like sleep patterns, exercise, and nutrition, profoundly influence mental well-being. Communicative abilities, relationship skills, and even the health and well-being of a community can impact mental health. Integrating positive spiritual practices into treatment can improve outcomes in mood and anxiety disorders.
The significance of a holistic approach to mental health lies in its emphasis on an all-encompassing treatment plan that involves collaboration among diverse healthcare professionals. Holistic mental health treatments are designed to integrate and tackle the interplay of physical, mental, social, and spiritual factors within a person’s life.
Recognizing that a person undergoing treatment is more than the sum of their mental health symptoms, we at Amend Treatment are dedicated to embracing a holistic perspective. We guarantee that everyone seeking our assistance is viewed through a holistic lens. Get in touch with us today to find out more about our treatment options and different modalities.