Drumming therapy

Rehab can be a difficult, emotional process which can really take its toll on a person – physically, mentally, and emotionally. To help with this, there are a number of addiction therapies which can be used to complement the main treatment programme. Drumming therapy is a type of music therapy which uses drums and other percussion instruments to help people in treatment release their emotions, reduce stress, and boost their mood.

What forms does drumming therapy come in?

Drumming therapy can be delivered in a number of different ways. It can be done individually or in a group setting and it can be used as a standalone treatment or as part of a wider programme:

Individual drumming therapy
This is where you will work one-on-one with a therapist to explore your feelings and emotions through drumming. This can be a very powerful experience as it allows you to go at your own pace and really focus on your own healing process.
Group drumming therapy
This is a great way to connect with other people in recovery and learn how to communicate and trust others. It can also be a lot of fun!
No drums necessary
You don’t necessarily need drums to benefit from drumming therapy. Sometimes other percussion instruments, such as shakers or rattles, can be used. Alternatively, you can use your hands or feet to create a rhythm.

What are the benefits of drumming therapy?

Here are just a few ways in which drumming therapy can help during the stage of early recovery:

  • Improves psychological wellbeing
  • Reduces stress and anxiety
  • Alleviates physical and psychological tensions through self-expression
  • Helps manage chronic pain
  • Provides a release for negative feelings and emotional trauma
  • Decreases impulsive behaviours
  • Boosts the immune system
  • Allows you to learn new social skills
  • Increases self-esteem and confidence

All of these are incredibly important during addiction treatment because they help to make the process more bearable, and they also equip you with the tools you need to stay sober in the long term.

How does drumming therapy help recovery?

Integrating drumming therapy into rehabilitation treatment programmes has proven to be a fantastic way for people to engage and feel connected to the other people in rehab. Group drum therapy also provides the opportunity for you to let off steam in a positive and creative way.

Drum therapy helps reduce impulsiveness as you need to persist in the activity despite the level of difficulty or delay in achieving immediate success. This helps you to build confidence and challenges preconceived assumptions that you are not capable of getting through difficult things (such as completing rehab). In turn, your self-esteem is boosted as you overcome negative self-beliefs giving you the strength to complete your treatment.

During drumming therapy, you may begin by believing that “drumming is not for me” or “I won’t be able to do it.” After the sessions, you will think differently with increased self-belief in your ability to achieve your recovery goals.

As Victor Hugo said;

“Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.”

How does drumming therapy complement other addiction treatments?

Drumming therapy is often used as an adjunct to other types of treatment, such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), group therapy, and individual counselling and it is a great way to add some fun and creativity into what can be a very daunting process. It also encourages people who feel shy or uncomfortable talking about their feelings to express themselves in a different way.

One of the main aims of drumming therapy is to help you feel more connected to yourself and those around you. In rehab, this is important as it can help create a sense of community and belonging, which are both essential for recovery. It also helps to promote communication and trust, which are key components of any successful treatment programme.

How can drumming therapy help after rehab?

Drumming therapy is a great way to support your recovery after treatment and to help you stay on track in the long term. Leaving an addiction treatment centre can be a very difficult transition. While you are in rehab, you are in an immersive and protected recovery environment, but when you leave, you will be exposed to triggers and temptations that can be difficult to resist.

This is where drumming therapy can help. The skills and confidence you gain during treatment will stay with you after you leave, and you will be able to use them in your daily life to manage stress, cope with difficult emotions, and stay connected to your recovery community. If you are experiencing particularly strong cravings or you are going through a difficult moment, you can start drumming to help you get through it.

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Frequently asked questions

Who can benefit from drumming therapy in rehab?
Everyone can benefit from drumming therapy as part of their addiction treatment programme. It is a great way to connect with yourself and others, learn new skills, and manage stress and emotions. It can also help you when you leave rehab to stay on track with your recovery because playing drums or immersing yourself in what you learned during drum therapy can help you through difficult moments or when cravings flare up.
Do I need to be able to play the drums?
No, you don’t need to be able to play the drums to undergo and benefit from drumming therapy. The focus of drumming therapy is on the process, not the final product. In fact, not knowing the drums can be a bonus because you won’t be thinking about the technical side of what you are doing so you will be able to just go with the flow. As long as you are able to make a rhythm, you will be able to benefit from drumming therapy.
Where can I access drumming therapy during rehab?
UKAT offers drumming therapy in a number of our addiction treatment centres because we believe it is an effective tool in recovery, a sentiment shared by many of our clients. Get in touch with us today so we can help you find the perfect rehab centre for your recovery.