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How Alcohol Can Worsen Depression

Man's head explodes, symbolizing the link between alcohol and depression

The link between alcohol and depression is toxic. Drinking alcohol is a common way in which people try to cope with depression, but unfortunately, it can actually worsen the symptoms and severity of the condition. Alcohol acts as a depressant on the central nervous system, slowing down brain function and causing feelings of drowsiness, lethargy, and sadness. Zelus Recovery’s dual diagnosis treatment helps teens and adults with co-occurring disorders like depression and alcohol addiction. With the proper support and resources, it is possible to overcome both depression and alcohol addiction. 

What Is Depression? 

Depression is a pervasive mental health condition characterized by persistent feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and a lack of interest in daily activities. It can significantly impact an individual’s quality of life, affecting their thoughts, feelings, and ability to function. For young people, depression can be especially challenging to navigate as it not only affects their mental health but can also negatively impact their academic and social functioning.  

The Link Between Alcohol and Depression 

Understanding the connection between alcohol and depression is crucial when discussing co-occurring disorders. Alcohol is a depressant, which means it can lower mood and exacerbate existing depressive symptoms. Notably, individuals with depression may turn to alcohol as a form of self-medication, aiming to numb feelings of sadness or despair. However, this temporary relief often leads to a vicious cycle, as the effects of alcohol wear off and depressive symptoms return, often more intensely than before. 

Teenagers and young adults are particularly vulnerable to the negative effects of alcohol on mental health. The brain is still developing until the mid-20s, making it more susceptible to damage from substances like alcohol. Additionally, young people may be more prone to engaging in risky behaviors, such as excessive drinking, due to peer pressure or a lack of understanding about the potential consequences. 

What Are Co-Occurring Disorders? 

Co-occurring disorders, also known as dual diagnoses, occur when a person experiences a substance use disorder and a mental health condition concurrently. In the case of alcohol and depression, the two conditions can feed off each other, creating a cycle that can be difficult to break without professional help.  

At Zelus Recovery, we specialize in treating co-occurring disorders. Our expert team understands the complexities of these conditions and provides tailored treatment plans that address both issues simultaneously. We offer various therapies, including cognitive-behavioral therapy and dialectical behavior therapy, which have shown effectiveness in treating co-occurring disorders. 

Benefits of Dual Diagnosis Treatment 

Dual diagnosis treatment is essential for individuals dealing with co-occurring disorders. This approach ensures that both the substance use disorder and the mental health disorder are treated together, providing a more holistic and effective recovery path.  

Benefits of dual diagnosis treatment at Zelus Recovery include: 

  • Comprehensive care – We treat the whole person, not just the symptoms of their disorders. Our holistic approach encompasses mental, physical, and spiritual health. 
  • Personalized treatment – We understand that every patient is unique, and so are their recovery needs. That’s why we tailor our treatment plans to each individual. 
  • Family involvement Recognizing the importance of family in the recovery process, we provide support for families and involve them in treatment when appropriate. 
  • Expertise – Our team comprises experienced professionals who specialize in treating co-occurring disorders. 
  • Long-term support – We offer ongoing support and resources to help our patients maintain their sobriety and mental wellness after completing treatment with us. 

With the right treatment, it is possible to overcome co-occurring disorders like depression and alcohol addiction.  

Call Zelus Recovery Now to Start Treatment

At Zelus Recovery in Meridian, Idaho, we provide comprehensive treatments for depression, offering both in-person and telehealth options. Our experienced clinicians are trained in evidence-based interventions for adolescent depression, providing a safe and supportive environment for teens to process their emotions and develop healthy coping skills. 

If you or a loved one is struggling with depression and alcohol use, it’s important to know that help is available. Contact us online or call 208.518.0797 today to learn more about our services and how we can assist you. Teens and adults alike can find hope and healing at Zelus Recovery, where we are dedicated to helping individuals achieve long-term recovery from co-occurring disorders. Don’t let alcohol and depression take control of your life any longer.