Excessive alcohol consumption over long periods can lead to a wide range of physical and psychological problems. One of the main psychological side effects of alcohol is depression. When a person suffers from depression and alcohol addiction, they are often diagnosed with co-occurring disorders.
Through dual diagnosis, a treatment specialist can identify depression and its link with alcohol use disorder (AUD). It is vital that a client in an alcohol addiction treatment center in Texas receive treatment for both conditions. Otherwise, efforts to stop drinking may be overshadowed by multiple relapses.
Depression and Alcohol Addiction: What is the Link?
The relationship between addiction and depression may play out in three different ways:
It is possible that a person who is diagnosed with co-occurring disorders may experience both depression and alcoholism at the same time with no link between the two. As such, it is difficult to determine which came first. However, in a broad sense, the focus is still on treating both conditions so that the client can fully recover.
Depression Led to Alcoholism
A person who is clinically depressed may not know how to cope with their mental disorder. As a result, they may turn to alcohol to self-medicate. The occasional drink to relax may turn into binge drinking and, eventually, dependency. However, drinking more only causes depression to become worse.
Excessive Drinking Led to Depression
An individual who does not normally suffer from clinical depression may become severely depressed due to excessive drinking over a long period. Due to alcoholism’s effect on brain function, a person can suffer from depression or other mental disorders. Therefore, addiction may have led to clinical depression.
Symptoms of Depression and Alcoholism
The symptoms of depression and alcohol addiction can overlap. The main difference is that these symptoms intensify over time. Some of the most common symptoms of these co-occurring disorders include:
- Severe mood swings
- Drastic changes in behavior or routine
- Feelings of isolation or wanting to be alone
- Changes in sleep or appetite
- Disregard for responsibilities at home, school, or work
- A steady decline in appearance or health
The symptoms of alcoholism and depression slowly develop over time. Therefore, a person’s family, friends, or coworkers may not recognize the symptoms until several months or years into the addiction. It is important that both the person and/or their family take action once the symptoms become pronounced and the behaviors are consistent.
Dual Diagnosis for Alcoholism and Depression
A dual diagnosis is an approach that treatment specialists use to identify and provide treatment for alcoholism and depression. Through dual diagnosis treatment, a therapist can develop a treatment plan for each condition. While certain elements of the plan may overlap, others are targeted directly to the specific condition.
Treatment therapies that are appropriate for both conditions may include:
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy
- Dialectical behavior therapy
- Trauma therapy
- Motivational interviewing
- Acceptance and commitment therapy
- Experiential therapy
Once a person completes detox, a therapist may perform a comprehensive assessment to determine what type of treatment plan will provide the best results and promote long-term recovery. We also design treatment plans to help clients manage their symptoms of depression, giving them more success in all areas of their life.
The first step in treatment is to visit an alcohol addiction treatment center in Texas. You can discuss your condition, explore your options, and get started with alcohol detox or rehab.
Contact Mission Recovery Today
If you are suffering from depression and alcohol use disorder, then contact Mission Recovery today by calling 833.477.7379. We provide a comprehensive alcohol addiction treatment program in Texas. We can get you the help you need so that you have a full lifelong recovery.