Depression and Addiction

Depression is a mood disorder characterized by a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest in daily activities. Depression and addiction often go hand in hand due to the way symptoms of depression can trigger substance abuse and how long-term use of drugs and alcohol can change the brain to cause depression. Those with a dual diagnosis of depression and addiction can be effectively treated at a drug and alcohol rehab center.

Types of Depression

There are many different types of depression — each of which has varying symptoms and causes. Here are some of the most common types of depression.

Major Depression

Also known as major depressive disorder, major depression is characterized by a depressed mood or loss of interest in activities on most days of the week for at least two weeks. Other symptoms of major depression include changes in weight, difficulty sleeping, and feelings of guilt or worthlessness.

Persistent Depressive Disorder

Also known as dysthymia, persistent depressive disorder is depression that lasts for two years or longer. Symptoms are similar to those of major depression, which can be treated using a combination of medication and psychotherapy.

Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is characterized by interchanging episodes of extreme mania and extreme depression. During manic episodes, the person may feel extremely energetic and euphoric. The National Institute of Mental Health reports that an estimated 4.4% of U.S. adults will experience bipolar disorder at some point in their lives.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

SAD tends to affect those who live in regions where sunlight is minimal at certain times of the year. People with SAD have lower levels of vitamin D due to minimal sunlight exposure, which causes chemical imbalances in the brain that contribute to depression. SAD can be effectively treated using light therapy.

Psychotic Depression

This type of depression is accompanied by symptoms of psychosis such as hallucinations, delusions, and paranoia. Psychotic depression can be effectively treated with cognitive-behavioral therapy and a combination of antipsychotics and antidepressants.

Postpartum Depression

Postpartum depression is a mood disorder that affects 10% to 15% of women who have babies, according to a report in Annals of General Psychiatry. In up to 50% of women with postpartum depression, symptoms last longer than six months. This type of depression is thought to be caused by fluctuations in hormones that occur after giving birth.

Situational Depression

This type of depression is stress-related and typically develops after a person has experienced a traumatic event. Situational depression is usually short-lived, and can be effectively treated using psychotherapy.

Atypical Depression

Atypical depression is not as persistent as other types of depression and can be temporarily improved by positive events. Specific symptoms associated with atypical depression include being overly sensitive to criticism, increased appetite, and sleeping for long periods.

Who Is at Risk for Depression?

Depression can affect anyone at any time, for any reason. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, depression is caused by a combination of genetic, biological, environmental, and psychological factors.

Common risk factors of depression include:

  • A family history of depression
  • Major life changes such as retirement, divorce, or the death of a spouse
  • Stress or trauma
  • Certain medications
  • Certain health conditions
  • Conflicts with family or friends
  • Certain personality traits, such as low self-esteem or being pessimistic
  • Substance abuse

Depression Treatment

Depression is commonly treated using medications, psychotherapy, or a combination of both. Electroconvulsive therapy may also be used to treat depression when other interventions fail to work.

At drug rehab, depression and substance abuse can be effectively treated using dual-diagnosis therapy. Treating one disorder and not the other can lead to serious problems down the road such as relapse, drug overdose, and suicide.

Dual diagnosis therapy is often preceded by drug and alcohol detox, which treat physical dependence on these substances. Following drug detox, patients enter a treatment program to recover from addiction, and receive dual-diagnosis therapy to address depression.

Live Free Recovery and SSL offer a range of customizable drug and alcohol rehab programs that can be tailored to your unique recovery needs. Contact us today at 877-932-6757 to learn more about our dual diagnosis treatments.