Do you know Recovery at the Crossroads offers Pet Therapy? Twice a month our friends from FURever As Friends bring hypoallergenic and trained therapy dogs to engage and comfort our clients. 

Our Blackwood, New Jersey alcohol and drug rehab center is proud to support the New Jersey community. Many people who struggle with substance abuse deny the magnitude of their problem, assuring themselves and others that they’re in control, when they’re stuck in an endless cycle. When it comes to alcohol or drug addiction, seeking help from addiction treatment services is the most practical and effective long-term solution. At our New Jersey alcohol and drug rehab center, you’ll rediscover what it means to feel supported, cared for and loved so you can learn to love yourself.

We offer several holistic therapies including pet therapy. Pet therapy, also known as Animal Assisted Therapy (AAT) is a health intervention, meant to improve physical, social, emotional or cognitive functioning, with animals as an integral part of the treatment. It involves interactions between trained animals and individuals with the goal of improving their quality of life. While dogs are the most commonly used therapy animals, other animals such as cats, rabbits, horses, and even dolphins can also play a role in therapy sessions. These animals are carefully selected for their calm demeanor, obedience, and ability to connect with humans.

For most people, the presence of an animal prompts the body to release serotonin, prolactin and oxytocin. These hormones generate a relaxation and stress-reducing response, according to UCLA Health. Releasing these “happy hormones” also helps lower anxiety, so people will relax during their treatment or therapy. The presence of an animal also provides comfort and a needed distraction from an otherwise challenging time.

Purdue University found a 43% reduction in a physiological indicator of anxious activation with animal therapy. Interacting with animals has also been shown to decrease levels of cortisol (a stress-related hormone) and lower blood pressure. 

The link between trauma and addiction has become increasingly evident in recent years. Trauma can leave deep scars, affecting not just our mental health but our physical and emotional well-being, too. At Recovery at the Crossroads, we understand the complexities of trauma and offer a compassionate, holistic approach to help you heal and regain control of your life. Our holistic approaches to treating Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other trauma-related conditions focus on the whole person, not just the symptoms.

A plethora of research shows that animal therapy can decrease symptoms and increase the quality of life for those with PTSD. Dogs are trained to do specific tasks like waking people from nightmares, grounding an individual through nudging, pawing or leaning, and even bringing medication to a person when they need it. Studies show that pet therapy leads to decreased overall PTSD symptoms, including reduced levels of depression, decreased frequency of nightmares and sleep disturbance, decreased social isolation and lower levels of anger and anxiety. Other studies have found that animals can reduce loneliness, increase feelings of social support, and boost your mood.

As we continue to uncover the many benefits of pet therapy, let’s embrace the healing power of our furry friends and appreciate the joy they bring into our lives. Take a moment to give extra cuddles, treats, and belly rubs to your beloved companions today.

Speak with an intake specialist to personalize your trauma healing plan at 888-342-3881 today.