Understanding Depression

depression-seacliffThere are many reasons why you may feel depressed from time to time. Perhaps someone close to you passed away, you lost your job, your relationship ended, or you’re just going through a difficult time. While you may feel upset, sad, lonely, or lethargic for a while, it does pass and you’re able to pick yourself back up and slowly move on.

However, for some people, these feelings don’t go away. They persist day after day, whether there is a clear cause or not. It’s more than just a temporary case of the blues. When these feelings continue, it can be a sign of depression.

Depression is a form of mental illness, but one that can be treated and successfully managed with help from Seacliff. There are ways that you can cope with depression more effectively and minimize symptoms so that they don’t have a major impact on your daily life.

Types of Depression

Not everyone experiences depression in the same way. For some people, it is more severe than others. There are a few different types of depression that you can have. They include:

  • Major Depression
  • Persistent Depressive Disorder (formerly dysthymia)
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder

Major depression involves experiencing disabling symptoms for at least two weeks that interfere with your day-to-day life. Persistent depressive disorder involves depression that lasts for at least two years. People with this condition may always seem to be irritable or in a poor mood. Bipolar disorder is when mood cycles between major highs (mania) and major lows (depression). The person may seem incredibly happy and energetic for a period and then become sad, lethargic, and disconnected. Seasonal affective disorder typically occurs during the winter when there is less sunlight.

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When Depression and Addiction Are Co-Occurring

When a person experiences both depression and addiction together, it is known as a co-occurring disorder or dual diagnosis. The conditions may exist independently of one another or have overlapping symptoms. Because they can impact one another and often occur simultaneously, it is important that both substance use and depression are treated simultaneously. This allows you to develop a better understanding of how each condition affects the other and how they affect your overall well-being. Treating one before the other can increase risk of relapse because you are not treating an underlying factor. By engaging in treatment for both, you can create a more effective relapse prevention plan and implement targeted strategies for recovery that meet your individual needs.

What is the Connection Between Depression and Addiction?

Depression and addiction can work together very closely and have overlapping symptoms. Sometimes it can be difficult to determine which occurred first. People may turn to drugs or alcohol as a way of coping with depression and trying to self-medicate to alleviate symptoms. Substance use may temporarily help them to forget their problems or feel better for a while. However, it is only a temporary fix and ultimately substance use can exacerbate the symptoms of depression leaving individuals feeling worse. Depression is also a common trigger for relapse.

At the same time, the effects of drugs or alcohol can make an individual feel more depressed or hopeless than they might otherwise feel. These substances interfere with the brain and how it processes information. While addiction doesn’t cause mental illness per se, it can make symptoms worse or more noticeable. It is important to recognize co-occurring disorders and seek treatment at a facility like Seacliff that is trained in treating these conditions together.

Signs and Symptoms of Depression

The signs and symptoms of depression can vary from person to person and also differ in severity. Some common symptoms include persistent feelings of sadness or anxiousness, loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed, fatigue, trouble concentrating, restlessness, insomnia, changes in appetite, irritability, feelings of helplessness or hopeless, and headaches or digestive trouble not caused by other conditions. Some people also experience suicidal thoughts which require immediate attention and treatment to keep the individual safe.

Depression Treatment Center & Rehab

Depression and addiction do not have to continue to take a negative toll on your life. There is hope and effective treatment is available at Seacliff Recovery Center, a depression treatment center and rehab in Huntington Beach. You can work through the challenges you face regarding substance use and mental health disorders and establish healthier routines and coping strategies. Turn your life around for the better and take control over addiction and depression at Seacliff.

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