Treatment for Alcoholism and Depression
Often, instances of alcoholism are also paired with depression. In fact, of the over 20 million people in the US who suffer from a mental disorder like depression, over 45 percent of them also have been diagnosed with a second disorder like alcoholism. Depression and alcoholism have a number of commonalities, and in many cases must be treated similarly.
What Are the Connections Between Long-Term Alcoholism and Depression?
Alcoholism and depression are closely tied. Nearly 40 percent of people who admit to drinking heavily also display symptoms of depression. This is because long-term alcohol use has been proven to have many of the same effects on your brain as a mood disorder like depression. As you begin to feel symptoms of depression, you may be more likely to drink in an attempt to change these feelings. This cycle is considered especially difficult to break, making proper treatment the only way for you to beat both depression and alcoholism.
What Type of Treatment Is Available for Alcoholism and Depression?
If you are suffering from depression and alcoholism, it is necessary to treat both disorders at once. You are more likely to experience a relapse if you simply treat one disorder at a time because the symptoms for the other will remain. Although there are a number of options, Dual Diagnosis treatment specializes in treating your mental disorder as well as your addiction. Many Dual Diagnosis programs are completed as part of residential rehab, allowing you to receive counseling and other treatment from trained medical professionals while living away from your everyday life. Through integrated treatment, you will change every aspect of your life, including your diet, exercise and ways of thinking.
In many cases, the first step will be treating the medical aspects of your addiction and stabilizing your depression through medication. Support groups and counseling will then help you overcome the mental pull of your alcoholism. These same groups will also help you to examine and understand your feelings of depression, and offer you alternative ways to handle them instead of turning to alcohol. This treatment has been proven highly effective.
Continuing therapy is exceedingly important to maintaining your success. Following release from Dual Diagnosis programs, there are also outpatient and community support groups that can continue to help you on your road to recovery.
Need Help Finding Treatment for Alcoholism and Depression?
Our toll-free helpline is here if you are ready to seek treatment for your depression and alcohol addiction.