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How Being in Nature Assists with Addiction Recovery

There are many additional activities that we can incorporate into our lives during the process of addiction recovery which can be instrumental in our path towards sobriety.

Addiction recovery is not just about no longer using a substance; it’s about finding new ways to enjoy our lives, or remembering what gave us joy before we became addicted.


Using Nature to Heal During Addiction Recovery

Nature is amazing in so many ways and, although it may be hard to understand how it manages to have such positive effects on us, those effects are undeniable.

One of the most noticeable benefits of spending time in nature, is the improvement of mental clarity and overall mood.

However, there are many more benefits of being outdoors which can be particularly beneficial during addiction recovery.

5 Benefits of Nature During Addiction Recovery – Recovering from Substance Abuse


Reduces Feelings of Depression

Mental illnesses such as depression, often exist alongside addiction. It’s not uncommon for addicted people to feel depressed. It’s also likely that people with depression turn to substance abuse as a coping mechanism.

With regular exposure to sunlight, fresh air and nature, we get to experience an elevation in our overall mood and, when we feel a sense of happiness, we are less likely to turn to a substance.

Extra Vitamin D Through Sun Exposure

Although spending many hours in the direct sun can damage your skin, short bursts of sun exposure can be really good for your immune system and general health.

Vitamin D helps build a strong immune system, improves heart health and a deficiency in vitamin D has recently been linked to depression.

With a healthy body and mind, we are better equipped to deal with the physical, emotional and mental challenges that come with addiction recovery.

Relieves Stress and Anxiety

Being surrounded by nature has shown to relieve feelings of anxiety and stress. When we are outdoors, we have the time to observe the world around us and reflect on how much there is to be grateful for.

It’s not necessary to hike up the mountain every day; a walk around your garden or a 15-minute break on the nearest park bench can work wonders for our stress and anxiety.

Encourages You to Be Active

Spending time outdoors can encourage you to be more physically active which results in improved fitness levels.

When we are fit, we have more energy and overall drive to face daily life and all the hurdles that come with it.

Regular exercise also fosters a feeling of accomplishment which is extremely important when recovering from drug abuse or alcohol abuse; the more we accomplish, the more we strive to accomplish.

Improves Sleeping Patterns

Excessive exposure to artificial light can disrupt your sleeping pattern, causing insomnia or the inability to fall into a deep, restful state of sleep.

By exposing ourselves to a few minutes of natural light, especially the morning sun, we help our body maintain a healthy circadian rhythm.

Restful sleep is crucial if we want to wake up feeling energised with enough mental clarity to get through the day, without being held back by fatigue.

The Healing Powers of Nature

Although it’s not necessary to spend every moment of our days in nature, it’s extremely important that we find a healthy balance between indoors and outdoors.

During addiction recovery, our bodies go through radical changes which can be hard to manage when we don’t look after ourselves.

By spending just a few minutes of every day somewhere in nature, whether it’s going on a hike or simply sitting next to our favourite tree in our own garden, we can help our bodies along their healing journey.

Step Away – Rehabilitation Centre South Africa

We are situated in the heart of beautiful Sea View just outside of Port Elizabeth. Surrounded by lush greenery, with a panoramic view of the ocean, our facility offers direct access to peaceful surroundings.

Abundant natural light is let into the building, while beautiful views of nature can be enjoyed through every window.

At Step Away, we understand the healing powers of nature and sunlight and encourage individuals who are attending our programmes to enjoy their natural surroundings at every opportunity.

For more information about our recovery programmes, please feel free to contact us.

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