Dealing With Depression and Addiction

depression and addictionFor many men, depression and addiction go hand in hand – and it’s a dangerous duo. One study found that men with alcohol dependence had rates of depression three times higher than the general population. And that number is even higher if you’re dealing with bipolar disorder.

What’s more, studies show that both people with depression and people with a substance use disorder have about a 10 percent lifetime suicide risk, respectively. When combined, this risk skyrockets to about one in four. Depression is also one of the biggest predictors of relapse.

About 20 percent of Americans with an anxiety or mood disorder such as depression have an alcohol or other substance use disorder, and about 20 percent of those with an alcohol or substance use disorder also have an anxiety or mood disorder, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America.

Yet it’s not always clear whether substance abuse or depression comes first. Depression may exist prior to substance abuse or develop as a side effect of drug and alcohol dependency. We do know, however, that both conditions share a few common triggers, including:

  • The brain: Both substance abuse and depression affect areas of the brain responsible for stress response. In addition, early drug use can harm brain development, increasing a person’s risk for mental illness. It works the other way, too.
  • Genetics. Your genetics play a role in the development of addiction and mental illness as well as whether you’re more likely to experience both conditions, according to the NIDA.

Treating Addiction and Depression Together
Successful recovery involves treatment for both depression and substance abuse. At 1
0 Acre Ranch, counselors, social workers and addiction specialists work with you or someone you love to develop a specialized recovery plan to manage both diagnoses and to optimize the chance of treatment success. To learn more about our affordable dual diagnosis treatment program, call today: 877-228-4679.