How addiction and depression are similar yet different

Did you know that alcohol addiction, mental depression and drug abuse have complex and tangled relationship? Yes, these three are related closely with each other because mental depressive disorders like mental illnesses and substance abuse are co-occurring disorders associated with drug abuse, alcoholism and dual-diagnosis. This is one of the reasons why overcoming substance abuse is difficult to achieve. Experts believe that addiction & depression take place simultaneously. Most often the addict may feel depressed when he starts using alcohol or drugs. This initial depression often results in adverse stage as the addiction progresses.


Results of studies of the Department of Health and Human Services reveal that persons with mental depression have higher risks of drug addiction and alcoholism. Figures also show that one in every five adults with episodes of mental depression also has substance abuse history. Because of this figures, researchers are wondering as to which comes first, drug addiction or mental depression.

Depression is a serious, debilitating disease that left untreated can lead to suicidal behaviours. Clinical depression is defined as persistent feelings of sadness, loneliness, self-loathing, isolation, the inability to find pleasure in once-enjoyable activities, disruption of work or social life, inability to feel emotions, exhaustion, lack of motivation, feelings of helplessness and sometimes suicidal thoughts and even suicide attempts. Depression is usually diagnosed during an individual therapy session and can be treated with a number of different drugs and family/social therapies.

Here are some of the common symptoms of depression:

o One tends to feel depressed almost most of the drug & this becomes a matter of daily routine.

o The patient loses interest in activities that used to excite him in the past.

o One gains a lot of weight or loses a considerable amount of weight.

o Finding trouble in sleeping.

o Sleeping most of the time.

o Feeling tired almost every day without any reason.

o Feeling worthless or guilty for no reason at all.

o Finding it difficult to concentrate or thinking rationally.

o Moving more slowly than usual.

o Speaking more slowly than usual.

o Getting thoughts of suicide or death.

Depression can ultimately lead to addiction. Some people use alcohol or drugs to fight depression they are suffering from. This stage is termed as self meditating by doctors. The effect of alcohol or drugs can provide temporary relief to the person. The individual feels relieved from the feeling of sadness, guilty or worthlessness. However, the sad part is that as soon as the effect of the alcohol or drug is over, the bad feeling returns.

The consequences of depression are bad. Most people suffering from depression often withdraw from social contacts. The even find it difficult to handle jobs or sticking to a particular job for a long time.

Why substance addiction leads to mental depression?

Researchers discovered that substance addiction leads to mental depression in several ways. They found that prolonged and excessive abuse of substances like alcohol and drugs result to psychiatric disorders in junkies like hallucinations, mental depressive symptoms and many more. Usually, psychological depressive disorders arise as one of the withdrawal symptoms of alcoholism or drug addiction. Moreover, there are also instances where mental depression is only short-lived and can become full blown if not treated quickly.

How mental depression lead to drug addiction and alcoholism?

For years, health professionals conduct studies to prove the association, effects and causes of alcohol addiction, mental depression and drug abuse. Researchers discovered that when mental depression is untreated, individuals affected felt hopeless and sad, thus they resort to alcohol ingestion or drug addiction to numb the pain and to forget their problems. Resorting to drugs and alcohol is their way of self-medicating mental depression. What they don't know is that self-medication can lead to alcohol and drug dependency in time. Moreover, alcohol and drug abuse also intensify mental depression instead of providing relief.

Other elements that cause the co-occurrence of drug abuse, alcohol addiction and mental depression are stress, environment and trauma. These elements are independent from dual diagnosis and can also result to the onset of these disorders. For instance, excessive trauma and tension are the famous causative factors of mental depression, alcoholism and drug abuse. Moreover, the onset of these disorders also increases the risk of developing other diseases concurrently. To know more about these co-occurring diseases, you can surf the web, consult drug abuse and alcoholism experts or call drug abuse hotline.

If you or someone you care about is suffering from both addiction and depression, you should know that there are treatment options available that can successfully treat both conditions at once. Or if you have been battling depression for so long you're considering turning to drugs or alcohol, take action right now. Your life - and the life of those around you - could depend on it. Call us right now or click on one of the links below to start the rest of your life today.