Depression and Addiction – How Are They Related?

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Co-occurring disorders are characterized by the simultaneous presence of two or more mental health or drug use problems in the same individual. When both mental health and drug use issues coexist, it means you have a dual diagnosis. The words “dual diagnosis” and “co-occurring disorders” both refer to the same phenomenon. In today’s post, we’ll discuss the commonalities between depression and addiction, the signs and symptoms of depression, and the best methods for treating both conditions together. If you know someone who is dealing with these issues, feel free to send them this post.

What is depression?

Nowadays, this word is very widespread. And it seems as if more and more people are suffering from it. While sadly, that is true, we still need to know the distinction between feeling depressed and having depression. Sadness, irritability, or a general lack of interest in normal activities are all hallmarks of depression. We all feel depressed sometimes, but it doesn’t mean that we suffer from depression. Depression is a severe mental health disease that has far-reaching consequences for a person’s ability to carry out daily tasks. What you feel, think, and do are all impacted by this prevalent mood condition. This can go on for an indefinite amount of time if there is no treatment. When depression and addiction are paired up, the best course of action is getting to addiction treatment Boynton Beach FL as soon as possible.

a person curled up in a fetal position siting against the wall
Depression is not unbeatable.

There are multiple variables that might increase one’s vulnerability to developing depression. They can be biological, genetic, environmental, or psychological. Most often, it is caused by outside factors combined with one, or more of these variables. Significant hurdles in life and having no one to turn to and nothing to find solace in are what we most often see in the most severe cases. Some medical conditions and pharmaceuticals can also cause depression. Substance abuse addicts are also at a very high risk of developing depression. Most heavy addicts who are going through heroin rehab Florida or cocaine rehab, are suffering from grave depression.

The data is undeniable: those struggling with drug users should be alert to the possibility of developing depression. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America estimates that around 20% of people in the United States who are presently dealing with an anxiety or mood illness like depression also have a drug use issue. Moreover, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, this number could increase to over 50% in the coming years. About 9.5 million people in the United States aged 18 and up have reported having a dual diagnosis of drug use disorder and a mental disease such as depression. This is according to the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health.

Types of depression

  • Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a mental health condition defined by practically daily (for at least two weeks) gloomy mood, disturbed sleep and eating habits, thoughts of suicide, feelings of guilt, poor energy, and psychomotor agitation.
  • Depression may be more severe in those who suffer from the persistent depressive disorder (PDD), also known as dysthymia. It’s diagnosed when depression symptoms persist almost every day for 2 years or longer. People with PDD may suffer comparable but milder symptoms than those with MDD.
  • Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is depression that manifests itself every winter. During the spring and summer, when there is more daylight, this form of depression often lifts.
  • When women suffer serious depression after giving birth, it is called postpartum depression. It may hinder a mother’s ability to take care of herself and her child.
  • Depression accompanied by psychotic characteristics is known as manic-depressive depression. It is characterized by very low mood and other psychotic symptoms such as delusions and hallucinations.
a person with depression
Depression is a serious mental illness and we should treat it accordingly.

Indications of depression in teenagers and younger adults

Children and adolescents may exhibit some or all of the same symptoms of depression as adults, although there might be notable distinctions. Symptoms of depression in children and teenagers are different from symptoms that occur in older adults. These are the most common indications of depression in teens and young adults.

  • Sadness, irritability, clinginess, concern, feeling pain, refusing to go to school
  • Negative emotions, anger, poor academic performance, or violent behavior in school
  • Feeling worthless, misunderstood, and extremely sensitive
  • Substance abuse, excessive eating or sleeping, self-harm
  • Loss of interest in normal activities, and avoiding social interaction

In the USA, there are more and more people with oxycodone addictions as well. Even teenagers. Oxycodone is a common opioid painkiller you can get at every CBS store. People who suffer from depression are more likely to misuse this over-the-counter drug. Therefore, risking having to go to oxycodone rehab which is not pleasant at all.

Signs of depression in older adults

Aging does not always come with the onset of depression. Depression is frequently misdiagnosed in older adults or left untreated. This is because they may be embarrassed to ask for treatment and they’re better at hiding it. Some of the signs of depression in older adults may be less noticeable or manifest themselves in a different way.

  • Confusing memories or a shift in character
  • Soreness or discomfort in the body
  • Problems with sleep, hunger, or libido
  • Having suicidal thoughts or strong impulses, most often among elderly males
  • Substance abuse and self-harm
an adult suffering from depression and addiction
It’s not always easy to spot depression in adults.

You should not rely on these symptoms alone, as they can represent some other mental disorders as well. Only a doctor can diagnose depression. However, being aware of the signs of depression might aid in understanding when to seek assistance. If you try taking Adderall on your own to calm your anxiety and depression, without consulting with a professional, you’ll be risking forming an addiction to Adderall as well. And then you may have to go through Adderall addiction rehab Boynton Beach on top of everything. A popular Canadian psychologist, Jordan Peterson, has admitted to having an Adderall addiction in hopes of warning others of the troubles it can cause. It is not hard to develop an Adderall addiction.

Understanding the connection between depression and substance abuse

As we have stated earlier, addiction and depression often occur together. However, this does not always mean that one causes another. The following are three of the ways in which mental health issues and drug abuse relate:

  • Both illnesses have the same set of risk factors. Substance abuse and mental illness may have many causes, including influences from genetics, the environment, stress, and trauma. Many factors, but mostly genetics, can contribute to an individual’s susceptibility to having a drug use disease.
  • Substance abuse illnesses may have their roots in mental health issues. Self-medication is a strategy for many people who suffer from mental health conditions like depression. In an attempt to dull or eradicate their symptoms. Substances may provide temporary relief from depressive symptoms. But long-term usage actually increases depressive symptoms and increases the risk of drug abuse disorder
  • Drug and alcohol abuse may exacerbate preexisting mental health conditions. Those who have a genetic predisposition to a mental health issue may have additional negative effects from substance abuse, such as disruptions in their ability to regulate their emotions and resist temptation. One study indicated that the likelihood of getting major depressive disorder was higher in patients with alcohol addiction.

A combination of mental health and drug use disorders can have detrimental effects regardless of which problem manifested first. If you know someone that suffers from an addiction problem, try to persuade them in getting residential drug treatment Florida immediately.

needle, pills and powder drugs
Depression and addiction can occur in both orders.

How do co-occurring disorders affect treatment?

Co-occurring disorders might increase the difficulty of treatment. Sometimes, people with co-occurring disorders don’t get the care they need because their treatment demands are too great. People with co-occurring illnesses, like depression and addiction, are more likely to have more symptoms than individuals with depression alone. Suicidal ideation is much more prevalent in patients with dual diagnosis. Especially in people who use heavy drugs like meth or cocaine. In which case, you should consider going into meth rehab Florida as soon as possible. When treating both depression and drug use problems at the same time, a method called integrated therapy is most effective. In an integrated approach to treatment, different approaches, such as talk therapy and medication, are used together. In order to get the best possible outcome for the patient.

What are the most effective therapy types for depression and addiction?

Behavioral therapy is an effective treatment for depression and drug use disorders. Many different types of behavioral therapy, both group and individual, are available.

  1. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a kind of talk therapy that has been shown to be useful in treating mental health issues including depression and addictions like drug abuse. This is something that’s often used at crack cocaine rehab centers. It can be effective even in the most severe cases.
  2. Dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) is used to mitigate self-harming behaviors, such as substance abuse and suicide ideation or attempt.
  3. Motivational interviewing (MI) is a technique used to increase a person’s level of dedication to making a positive change.
a person on a therapy session
Therapy is the most important part of the treatment.

Managing co-occurring disorders with medication

Medication is very effective in treating the symptoms of many mental and drug use disorders, making it a useful tool in the treatment of co-occurring diseases. Addicts should not try and medicate themselves, without any professional guidance and monitoring. Or else, they risk developing an addiction to the antidepressants as well. And so they’ll end up in Florida prescription drugs addiction treatment on top of everything.

  • Selective reuptake inhibitors of serotonin, or (SSRIs), are a type of antidepressant. Medication of this sort may boost serotonin levels by blocking their reuptake. Because of their low side effect profiles, high levels of safety, and effectiveness, SSRIs are often the first medications doctors will recommend.
  • Synergic serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) are another kind of drug that can combat depression. They block both serotonin and norepinephrine absorption.
  • Bupropion. The exact mechanism of action of this antidepressant is unknown. It seems to be beneficial due to a little inhibition of dopamine and norepinephrine reuptake. To help people quit smoking, this drug is also available.

What insurance plan is best for drug rehabilitation?

Only a small percentage of people with substance abuse issues in the United States really get the help they need. Getting help for substance addiction may be difficult, if not impossible, due to a variety of factors. Financial concerns are a common barrier to treatment. Substance abuse therapy, or recovery, is a lengthy process that often requires hospitalization. However,  most of these insurance plans cover substance abuse therapy.

a medical professional holding chocolate euro coins
Most insurance programs do cover treatment for depression and addiction.

FMLA (Family and Medical Leave Act):

The United States government enacted this law in 1993. The law’s overarching goal was to strike a balance between business and family concerns in the contemporary economy. In such cases, is drug rehab covered under FMLA? The answer is yes, of course.


Tricare is The Department of Defense’s health insurance program for active duty service members and their families. It covers most healthcare costs, including mental health treatments. However, does Tricare cover alcohol rehab? Yes. Tricare covers more than a hundred different illnesses.


This insurance plan offers a variety of plans for people of all ages. Support for mental health services is very strong. But does Aetna cover drug rehab? The answer is yes. It has invested a lot of time and money in it in recent years.


When it comes to substance abuse, does Cigna cover drug rehab? Cigna covers rehab for substance abuse as well as mental health disorders


This is another company offering flexible health insurance plans at low rates. Humana covers all of your mental health costs. However, the question still stands: Does Humana cover drug rehab? Yes. Care for mental health includes these services.

Blue Cross Blue Shield:

Affordable and comprehensive health care coverage for a wide range of medical procedures is provided through Blue Cross Blue Shield. But does Blue Cross Blue Shield cover rehab? Since this is an all-inclusive healthcare plan, it covers all treatment for mental health issues including depression and addiction.

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