5 Ways Alcohol Abuse Can Cause Depression

Friday, October 25th, 2013

Many alcohol abuse sufferers also have intermittent problems with depression. For many people, it appears that alcohol problems go hand-in-hand with depression. The reasons for the association are numerous, but they include a number of physical, psychological and environmental factors. The following are 5 ways alcohol abuse can cause depression:

Alcohol Abuse and Depression: 5 Reasons Behind the Link

1. Loss of Loved Ones
Alcoholism takes a toll on personal relationships. Many married couples end in divorce because of addiction-related issues. The loss of such a crucial relationship could start a period of depression. A person who is abusing alcohol may get into fights with family members and friends who do not approve of the behaviors associated with the addiction. The sense that one does not have support from the people he or she loves can cause loneliness and depression.

2. Loss of Job
Many people who suffer from alcohol abuse also have problems at work. The problems may be as small as showing up late for work occasionally, or as severe as acting unprofessionally at work. Someone who loses his or her job due to alcoholism may then become depressed over the loss.  Alcohol abuse can also lead to financial loss or in some cases total financial ruin.  For many people the downward financial spiral coupled with the addiction to alcohol can be difficult to handle and they may find themselves dealing with depression.

3. Dependence Depression
Individuals who develop addictions and physical dependence on substances may become depressed over the actual addiction. Not many people want to be addicted to alcohol, and having an addiction can make some people feel weak and powerless, even if that is not the case. Therefore, the simple concept of having an alcohol addiction itself can be enough to make a person depressed.

4. Alcohol-Induced Illness
A person who suffers from alcohol addiction may feel unhealthy over time. He or she may suffer from migraine headaches, nausea, vomiting, or develop a sickness that is closely related to the addiction. A diagnosis of a physical condition such as cirrhosis could lead to depression in an alcohol abuser.

5. Alcohol Abuse Related Legal Issues
Alcohol abuse is closely linked to careless decisions, such as getting involved with fights or driving while under the influence. Both types of legal issues have stiff repercussions, such as the loss of one’s license, fines, and additional license points. A legal issue due to alcohol could have multiple repercussions, and depression could develop.

Receiving help as quickly as possible can prevent unnecessary bouts of depression, but it is never too late to get help.  Treatment for depression often includes medication and counseling, both of which are proven to be effective for dealing with both short and long-term symptoms of depression.  Alcohol abuse is a common co-occurring disorder with depression and should be treated alongside the depression for maximum chance of recovery.  Dealing with one and not the other can leave a person at high risk for relapse.  In such cases a person should seek out dual diagnosis treatment.