The Dangers of Self-Medicating Your Depression

The Dangers of Self-Medicating Your DepressionAccording to the National Institute of Health (NIH), depression may be described as feeling sad, blue, unhappy, miserable, or down in the dumps. However, true clinical depression is a mood disorder in which feelings of sadness, loss, anger, or frustration interfere with everyday life for weeks or longer.

Characteristics of Depression

People who struggle with depression often hold a more negative attitude about life in general and seem unable to believe that daily life experiences can have a positive outcome. This negative attitude makes it difficult for a depressed person to engage in daily activities and formulate meaningful relationships. In addition, a person with depression may display certain characteristics including the following:

  • Agitation, restlessness, and irritability
  • Becoming withdrawn or isolated
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Dramatic change in appetite
  • Fatigue and lack of energy
  • Feelings of hopelessness and helplessness
  • Feelings of worthlessness, self-hate, and guilt
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in activities that were once enjoyed
  • Thoughts of death or suicide
  • Trouble sleeping or too much sleeping

Depression changes every aspect of a person’s life as well as the lives of family, friends, and colleagues.

Additional Impacts of Depression

With the emotional, mental, and physical impacts that depression causes, it is not surprising to learn that depression has additional impacts. While the specific connection between depression and other health issues is not clearly understood, there is a relationship between depression and health issues including the following:

  • Stroke
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Thyroid disease
  • Decreased potency, premature ejaculation, and lack of vaginal lubrication
  • High blood pressure

The longer a person subjects his body to the damage of depression, the greater his risk for a more substantial health issue.

Depression Treatment

It is important to take a proactive position when it comes to treating your depression. While you may not feel that you have the energy to explore treatment options, it is important to at least determine whether your depression symptoms are due to an underlying medical condition. If your physician determines that there is no medical issue, you need to be prepared to investigate different treatment options until you find a solution that works for you.

Keep in mind that medications may help with the symptoms of depression but may not deal with the underlying emotional or mental health issues that are causing the depression. In addition, most antidepressants are not suitable for long-term use and put you at risk for self-medicating and addiction.
Your treatment plan may include medication for the short-term, but may also need to include therapy, lifestyle changes, a strong support system, and alternative holistic practices.

Find Integrated Treatment for Depression

If you are at risk of abuse or addiction from attempting to self-medicate your depression, you need to learn about more viable treatment options. Depression is a complicated condition that requires professional assistance and you need to explore the options, costs, and what your insurance may cover. We can help you get all of that information, so please call our toll free number today. We are available 24 hours a day to answer any questions you might have about depression so that we can help find the right treatment for you.