How does depression cause addiction?

Addiction is a common place issue amongst people who are experiencing a depressive disorder. Alcohol is classified as a central nervous system depressant. This means it will actually trigger typical symptoms of depression like sadness, lethargy and hopelessness. Many people who are depressed reach for alcohol and drugs as a way to numb the pain. This tends to lead to depression and addiction further feeding each other and each condition making the other amplified.

When someone is experiencing both addiction and depression, it is often referred to as a dual diagnosis. This diagnosis can be made with a variety of mental disorders combined with different addictions, such as mental disorders (bipolar, anxiety, depression) and other forms of addiction (sex, gambling, alcohol and drugs).

How can I get treated for both depression and addiction?

The treatment of depression and co-occurring addiction can be very challenging. When they occur concurrently, the treatment should focus on both disorders simultaneously. A plan for your treatment takes into consideration the symptoms you experience during depression, like low motivation, low energy and the feeling of general hopelessness. During the beginning of stages of recovery, inpatient residential recovery may be considered as the best option. Especially in circumstances where the individual seeking treatment has thoughts of suicide, or has a history of self harm.

An inpatient center can give 24 hour 7 day a week support to clients as they detox and start treatment for their mood disorder. As the patient progresses through treatment stages, a move to partial hospitalization and outpatient programs will offer a higher level of independence.

Statistics have shown that addictions to drugs and alcohol, is higher amongst those who also have depression. Mental illnesses and drug addictions require a an integrated treatment plan, that allows to both address their mental health needs and also the need to begin detoxification (detox) and rehabilitation.

Professionals in the mental health field are a valuable asset for intervening in the process of someone with depression. With the advice and counsel of a therapist, families can also learn more about depression and develop a better understanding of how to relate to someone suffering depression.

Am I suffering from depression?

Sometimes feeling down is just a normal part of life, it has its ups and downs. But when the emotions of hopelessness and despair won’t go away, this can very well be a sign of depression. Recognizing the causes of depression and the different symptoms can be the first step to overcoming the problem.

Depression is a mood disorder that is very common and debilitating. It’s more than just sadness in response to life’s issues, obstacles, and struggles. Depression can change how you think feel and how you function in your day to day life. The feelings of helplessness and worthlessness can be unrelenting and intense, and it may feel like you have little to no relief.

Some people have described it as literally living in a black hole of despair, with feelings of apathy, lifelessness, and emptiness. Men can typically exhibit more symptoms of anger and agitation. However your symptoms may manifest, when they are left without treatment they can become a serious health issue. It’s important to remember a lot of the negative feelings are just symptoms of the depression, and not the reality of your situation.

The 10 common symptoms that are associated with depression:

  • Feelings of helplessness and hopelessness: Feelings of the inability to change and improve your situation; a general bleak outlook on life.
  • Loss of interest in your daily activities: Lack of joy in your life, not able to show joy in regular your pastimes, hobbies, meeting up with friends/socializing, and even sex.
  • Changes in appetite and weight: Changes of an increase or decrease in weight of greater than 5% in a month.
  • Changes in sleeping patterns: Inability to get sufficient sleep (insomnia), especially in the early morning and chronic oversleeping.
  • Mood changes, easily agitated and angry: Having a low tolerance level, short temper, and easily irritated – everything gets on your nerves. These feelings can make you restless or even violent in certain circumstances.
  • Lack or loss of energy: Even small tasks may take a long time to complete. Feelings of being easily fatigued and drained or a general sluggish feeling with your regular routine.
  • Self-loathing, low self image: Being harsh on yourself for mistakes and perceived faults. Feelings of guilt and worthlessness are very common.
  • Reckless behavior: Engaging in things that cause danger like substance abuse, compulsive gambling, dangerous sports and reckless driving.
  • Problems concentrating: Having issues with focusing, remembering things and making decisions.
  • Aches and pains that are unexplained: Having an increased verbilizations of problems with certain physical issues such as back pain, headaches, muscle aches and stomach pain.

About Cliffside Malibu

You don’t have to go through this alone. Our dedicated staff is here for you every step of the way to help pull you out of your depression and give you the tools you need to sustain a healthy, happy life. Upon entering Cliffside Malibu, each patient is carefully assessed and a custom treatment plan is created for not only their immediate needs, but for their treatment for long-lasting recovery as well. Each patient is then matched with one of these five stages of the Transtheoretical Model: Precontemplation, Contemplation, Preparation, Action and Maintenance. An individualized treatment plan is created based on their current stage of change. This process is in place to ensure that all our patients receive the best treatment path possible for their own specific need. Our goal is to move individuals through their treatment by assessing their readiness for change and formulating stage-matched interventions in order to move them through their respective stage.

It is the policy of Cliffside Malibu to ensure that all individuals who present with chemical dependency issues are assessed for the appropriate level of care. We strive to provide continuum of care including medically supervised detox, residential treatment, day treatment and outpatient services. Services are provided to individuals with a primary diagnosis of substance abuse and/or alcohol addiction. Individuals seeking treatment are assessed by qualified staff to ensure program criteria are met and that each individual admitted is placed in the appropriate level of care for treatment. The program is designed and structured for individuals who are in need of a supportive environment in order to maintain Sobriety.

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