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Depression and Substance Abuse

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Many people face instances of depression throughout their lives. Issues like depression have the ability to negatively impact one’s life enough on their own. When paired with substance abuse problems, the effect on daily life can be extreme. Receiving help for these issues is vital in order to continue living a normal, healthy life. 

What is Depression?

Depression is a mood disorder that typically causes feelings of sadness and loss of interest. Depression negatively affects the way people think and feel. Those who have depression often have trouble completing day-to-day tasks. In severe cases, depression can lead to suicidal thoughts and ideations. Depression often requires long term treatment. 

Signs of Depression

Signs of depression can be both mental and physical, and include:

  • Sadness
  • Feelings of emptiness 
  • Irritability or frustration
  • Headaches 
  • Unexplained pains 
  • Feeling worthless 
  • Anxiety
  • Problems sleeping
  • Weight changes 
  • Slowed speaking or movement
  • Feelings of worthlessness
  • Lack of energy
  • Suicidal thoughts 

What is Substance Abuse?

Substance abuse is a consistent misuse of substances that one has the potential to become addicted to over time. Once the cycle of substance abuse has begun, it can be incredibly difficult to break free. When one is dealing with depression in addition to substance abuse issues, getting help is vital for success in sobriety. 

When an individual consumes an addictive substance, they experience a number of different effects depending on the substance being consumed. These effects may seem to provide temporary relief from their symptoms of depression, but the effects will wear off over time. In order to feel the same relief, the individual will have to consume the substance again. 

Over time, a tolerance to the substance will begin to build up. The individual will then have to consume larger quantities of the addictive substance in order to feel relief from their depression symptoms. After a time, a dependence on the substance will develop, and the individual will experience negative symptoms known as withdrawal if they do not consume the addictive substance. 

Signs of Substance Abuse 

There are many different potential symptoms of substance abuse. Those experiencing issues with substance abuse may experience a number of physical and behavioral symptoms, depending on the severity of their addiction and the method of consumption they have chosen. 

Behavioral symptoms of substance abuse may include:

  • Changes in attitude
  • Lethargy
  • Aggression
  • Mood swings
  • Changes of typical habits 
  • Changes in social life
  • Seeming withdrawn
  • Depression

Physical symptoms of substance abuse can include: 

  • Glazed eyes 
  • Bloodshot eyes 
  • Dilated pupils 
  • Looking unkempt 
  • Sleep issues 
  • Changes in weight 
  • Poor coordination

The Connection Between Depression and Substance Abuse

Substance abuse is one of the possible complications that may occur in those who have issues with depression. Those going through depression may try addictive substances in the hopes that the symptoms of their depression will be relieved. Unfortunately, one of the many symptoms of substance abuse is depression. This means that abusing addictive substances may actually worsen instances of depression over time. In response to this worsening of depression, one may take more of the addictive substance in order to feel better, resulting in a more severe substance abuse issue. 

Recovery Options for Depression and Substance Abuse

There are a variety of options when it comes to treatment for depression and substance abuse. Treatment options that heavily involve therapy are ideal for clients who have a history of depression in addition to their issues with substance abuse. While both outpatient and inpatient treatment options are made available to those who deal with depression and substance abuse, inpatient or residential treatment options are considered ideal, as they are able to provide an unmatched level of care to clients. During inpatient rehabilitation in California, clients live on the recovery center campus while undergoing treatment for their problems with depression and substance abuse. 

Residential and Inpatient Recovery for Depression and Substance Abuse

Residential treatment is the most common form of treatment for depression and substance abuse. During residential treatment, clients begin with a detoxification process and a number of questionnaires from both physicians and therapists at the treatment facility. The detox process may be medically assisted, meaning medications are supplied to lessen symptoms of withdrawal in patients with severe substance abuse problems. After detox, clients go on to take part in a number of different group and individual therapies designed to help address both their substance abuse and their issues with depression. Psychiatrists at the treatment facility may provide clients with prescriptions for medication designed to help their symptoms of depression. Clients are also encouraged to take part in other recovery groups like AA or NA, and may also take part in other forms of therapy such as music, art, and adventure therapies. 

Finding Depression and Substance Abuse Treatment

One of the first things to consider when seeking treatment for depression and substance abuse is whether or not traveling for treatment is an option. A willingness to travel often presents more facility options when looking for a recovery center to attend treatment at. While some clients may be willing to travel in order to receive treatment, others may wish to stay close to home while in recovery. Those who have a strong family and friend support system, or more comfortable with familiar spaces may prefer finding treatment near them when it comes to depression and substance abuse recovery. 

Covering the Cost of Depression and Substance Abuse Treatment 

Another aspect of treatment that must be considered is how one will cover the cost of their stay at an inpatient rehabilitation center for the treatment of depression and substance abuse. Paying for treatment at a rehabilitation center can be intimidating, but there are a variety of options when it comes to covering your stay. The cost of treatment varies depending on a number of factors including the length of treatment and the types of therapies and other amenities provided by the recovery facility. The best way to determine the cost of treatment for a particular individual is by contacting the recovery program directly. 

With Insurance 

Paying for treatment at a rehab facility is typically easiest for those who have health insurance. Most treatment center stays are covered either partially or fully under the behavioral health section of most insurance policies. Different insurance providers are accepted at different treatment facilities. The best way to determine your specific coverage is to speak with your insurance company. Customer service representatives from your insurance company will be able to go over the specifics of your particular plan’s coverage when it comes to treatment for depression and substance abuse. 

Without Insurance 

Covering the cost of treatment at a rehabilitation facility for depression and substance abuse without insurance can be a little trickier but is definitely still possible. Not having insurance should not discourage one from seeking help for their issues with depression and substance abuse. 

Many rehabilitation programs are willing to work with clients and come up with payment plans, allowing clients to pay for their stay over time as opposed to covering the entire cost up front. Additionally, many people entering into a treatment program reach out to friends and family to help them cover the cost of their stay. 

Final Thoughts about Depression and Substance Abuse 

Dealing with depression is never easy, and sometimes feelings of helplessness and sorrow can lead to issues with substance abuse. Once the cycle has begun, substance abuse and depression have a way of worsening one another. Breaking free from both depression and substance abuse is possible through intensive treatment at a reputable rehabilitation facility. 

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