Bath time is dreaded by many children- until they get in. Submerged in the warm water, surrounded by beloved bathtime toys, and receiving the loving touch of a doting parent helps children relax before bedtime. Science has proven that being submerged in water changes body chemistry and balances pH levels, causing relaxation. As adults, bathtime becomes a luxury for which there is rarely time, unless at a spa. Reader’s Digest suggests that taking an adult bath is exactly what is needed for total restoration.
Stress is a chronic problem, particularly when you’re living with an addiction or mental health disorder. Managing stress is essential for emotional regulation, keeping the body healthy, and maintaining focus on recovery. During a bath, focusing on relaxation is all that can happen. Otherwise, you’re just simmering in stress- literally. Instead, bath time can be a private time for self-care.
Self-care is a critical concept in recovery from addiction and co-occurring disorders. Taking time for self-care is the way you show yourself the same tender, loving care a parent shows a toddler in the bath. Instead of rubber duckies and Johnson’s baby shampoo, though there may be a time, there are other ways to enhance a bath time to rejuvenate mind, body, and spirit. Incorporating an adult bath into a self-care regime is healing for mind, body, and spirit.
How to bring together recovery and bath time? Here are some suggestions:
- Practicing alone time and practicing self-care aren’t always synonymous. Make bath time one of the ways you practice being alone with yourself. Turn off your phone, shut the door, and mark your calendar as busy.
- Since you aren’t bringing a glass of wine or champagne into a bath, bring another delicious beverage. Try making a tea which blends together relaxing herbs like chamomile and lavender with vanilla. Add a squeeze of lemon to help the body detoxify as it sweats in the warm water and a drizzle of honey for luxurious sweetness.
- Use aromatherapy to enhance the senses and promote relaxation. Put a few drops of essential oils into the bath. Light scented candles or an incense. Turn on an aromatherapy diffuser in the room so you can breathe it in with every inhale.
- If you feel like meditating, practice a mindfulness body scanning technique in which you become aware of the way the water is surrounding your body and offering you relaxation.
- If you don’t’ feel like meditating, bring an inspiring book with you. Doing recovery “homework” in the bath might not be relaxing. Reading inspirational books about spirituality, personal stories of recovery, and healing from mental health disorders will energize you as your bath relaxes you.
Enlightened Solutions brings together the best of holistic healing, alternative therapy, 12 step philosophy, and clinical treatment. Our partial care programs for dual diagnosis addiction and mental health disorders help clients grow along spiritual lines. Start your recovery with us by calling 833-801-5483.