Hot baths among traditional remedies for drug addiction

PHOTO: REUTERS

The head of a traditional drug addiction treatment centre, Ustad Ahmad Ischsan Maulana, praying with two recovering drug addicts sitting immersed in a herbal bath in Purbalingga village on Indonesia's Java Island. The traditional rehabilitation centre claims to have treated hundreds of addicts with a routine of herbal teas, baths, prayers and counselling. Ustad Maulana is known as "the boiling teacher" because of his use of hot baths. The centre in Purbalingga is one of 160 facilities across Indonesia that use traditional methods. There are 18 government rehab centres and almost 400 private ones and public clinics using more conventional means. But while raids, arrests and punishment of drug offenders pick up amid President Joko Widodo's intensification of a drug war, state funding for rehabilitation that weans people off drugs and cuts demand is dwindling.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 03, 2016, with the headline 'Hot baths among traditional remedies for drug addiction'. Print Edition | Subscribe