Depression is a fact of life for millions of people. While some of them are getting the addiction treatment they need to improve their mental health, far too many are not. A lot of people try to medicate their feelings away by abusing drugs and alcohol. Knowing how to deal with depression effectively can help you avoid worsening your mental health with addiction.
The Link Between Depression and Addiction
Each one of us has our own ways of coping when we feel down. Some people don’t have effective coping skills, however, so they may turn to heavy drinking or using drugs. This often provides a temporary escape from their painful feelings.
Substance abuse has the opposite effect. While being “high” masks depressed feelings, the high eventually goes away. Therefore, a person continues using. As his dependency on drugs and alcohol deepens, addiction worsens symptoms of depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders.
How to Deal With Depression
When someone suffers from depression, he has a hard time seeing the positive in his life. However, he has much better ways to cope with his depression than drug and alcohol abuse.
If you’re wondering how to deal with depression in a healthy way, you can try any of the following:
- Write: Writing in a journal is often a cathartic experience when you’re going through difficulties.
- Exercise: Regular physical activity is a proven mood booster. Find an activity you enjoy, such as hiking through the woods, jogging, dancing or swimming. Just make sure it’s something you love—you’re more likely to stick with it that way.
- Connect with others: We’re social beings, and having a network of friends and family is important. Talking to supportive people makes you feel better.
- See a therapist: Only a small number of people who need depression treatment seek it out. Partnering with a skilled counselor can help you work through your depression.
- Practice mindfulness: People fighting addiction have a hard time focusing on the present moment. Learn to practice mindfulness so that you don’t constantly worry about the past or the future.
There are other productive ways to deal with depression, such as volunteering, practicing self-care, and taking care of pets. Find ways that fit into your life, and don’t be afraid to reach out for help if you can’t break free of your sadness.
A Better Future Can Be Yours
At Melrose Recovery Group in Los Angeles, residents learn to imagine a better life as they work to overcome addiction. We’re a detox and addiction treatment facility dedicated to helping men and women create happier, healthier futures.
The services we offer include:
- Residential addiction treatment
- Adventure therapy program
- Nutrition therapy program
- Rehab for men
- Rehab for women
The caring team at Melrose Recovery Group is ready to show you how to deal with depression and experience a better future, free from addiction. Reach out to us today at 866-271-3438 to learn more.