World Mental Health Day is an international day for global mental health education, awareness, and advocacy against social stigma. However, its principles and message reach far beyond a day.
When you have both a substance abuse problem and a mental health issue such as
depression, bipolar disorder, or anxiety, it is called a co-occurring disorder or dual
diagnosis. Dealing with substance abuse, alcoholism, or drug addiction is never
easy, and it’s even more difficult when you’re also struggling with mental health
In most cases, someone abusing drugs such as alcohol is mostly going through
something that he can’t tell anyone about and this leads to addiction and
sometimes it even worsens the situation instead of making it better. Mental
disorders are caused by a complex interplay of genetics, the environment, and
other outside factors. If you are at risk for a mental disorder, abusing alcohol or
illegal or prescription drugs may push you over the edge.
Substance abuse may sharply increase symptoms of mental illness or even trigger
new symptoms. Abuse of alcohol or drugs can also interact with medications such
as antidepressants, anti-anxiety pills, and mood stabilizers, making them less
effective at managing symptoms.
Denial often comes up during addiction and sometimes with mental disorders, no
one ever wants to admit they have a problem, In this era its more admirable to act
tough and look like you have everything together rather than breaking down and
talking about your problems, it makes you weak they said, you still have to remember that asking for help is the first step to recovery.
Remember, there is always hope. Both mood disorders and alcohol and drug abuse
problems are treatable conditions. Recovering from co-occurring disorders
takes time, commitment, and courage, but people with substance abuse and
mental health problems can and do get better.
It’s important to get and stay sober during treatment. If your doctor needs to
prescribe medication as part of your treatment, mixing it with alcohol
or drugs could have serious effects. Similarly, talk therapy is far less effective
if you’re under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Relapses are part of the recovery process. Don’t get too discouraged if you
relapse. Slips and setbacks happen, but, with hard work, most people can
recover from their relapses and move on with recovery.