Treating Depression and Addiction

depressionWhether you or someone you know is addicted to drugs or alcohol, it may be difficult to understand how it happens. In fact, Most people in the world can experiment with drugs or drink alcohol without becoming addicted. For those who do become addicted, they can’t stop, and their drinking or using becomes the top priority in their lives.

Addiction has the power to take hold of people’s lives and destroy relationships with their loved ones and ruin their careers, which can lead to individuals becoming more depressed. This can leave a person feeling hopeless, but there is a solution. The first step is to understand the risk factors associated with addiction.

What Are the Risk Factors of Addiction?

Obviously, not everyone becomes addicted to drugs or alcohol. With this in mind, medical science set out to understand why some people become addicted while others don’t. The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) and National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) have conducted studies to see what leads to a person becoming addicted. Some of the following were clear indicators:

  • Age – Young people are more likely to become addicted because the prefrontal cortex doesn’t fully develop until the early 20s.
  • Genetics – Those who have family members who have been addicted may have a gene that makes them more prone to addiction.
  • Environment – A person’s environment can play a big role. Different situations such as poverty, living in a high-crime neighborhood or having abusive parents can increase a person’s risk of becoming addicted.
  • Mental Illness – The leading risk factor of becoming addicted is mental illness, and the main one is depression.

How Depression Leads to Addiction

Symptoms of depression can develop at any age, and many people don’t know how to deal with these symptoms. Being depressed can make people feel different, alone and embarrassed, so they may not seek help. Instead of finding help, they may drink or use drugs whenever they’re feeling depressed.

After a while, the brain begins to associate feelings of being depressed with drinking or using. When they feel down, their mind tells them that they need to get drunk or high to deal with the situation. The problem is that drinking and using continues to make people’s lives become unmanageable, which leads to even further symptoms of being depressed. The other issue is that individuals will need more alcohol or drugs to feel the way they want to because they’ve built up a tolerance.

Properly Treating Depression and Addiction

The best way to overcome this situation is by coming to Lakeview Health in Jacksonville, Florida, to experience dual diagnosis treatment. Only treating depression or only treating a person’s addiction is only solving half of the problem. Dual diagnosis treatment is meant to treat both a person’s mental illness as well as his or her addiction separately. This is crucial because individuals need to learn how to manage symptoms of their mental illness without drinking or using, and they also need to learn how to not drink or use drugs.

Our accredited addiction facility offers men and women evidence-based treatment approaches to treat addiction and depression. Call us today at 866-704-7692 for more information.