If you suffer from depression, eliminating alcohol may be a great start to a more productive and fulfilling life. Alcohol can exacerbate the effects of depression to the point where you may become crippled from being able to perform any daily function. It might even reach the point where you should seek professional treatment.
What is Depression?
Depression is a mood disorder that can greatly disrupt your daily life. You might feel a bit low or sad on occasion. This is not depression. If you feel hopeless and sad nearly every day paired with difficulty sleeping, functioning or eating, you could have a depressive disorder or you might be clinically depressed. If you lose interest in spending time with your family or friends and no longer find enjoyment in activities you once found pleasurable, you should speak with a professional. Also if you find it difficult to get out of bed and go to work each day, you could be in trouble.
The Association Between Alcohol and Depression
Alcohol typically makes depression worse by creating a domino effect of negative consequences in your life. You may start drinking alcohol more frequently as a way to self-medicate your depression. You might start drinking more with greater frequency to numb the pain even further. As this cycle continues, you will begin to avoid things you once enjoyed to drink, such as going to the gym or socializing. This will eventually begin to affect your work and your depression will worsen.
Advantages of Sober Living
After you stop drinking alcohol, you will receive nearly endless benefits. To begin, you will significantly increase your energy as you will no longer be experiencing booze-infused restless nights. Your skin will start to look amazing since alcohol is no longer devoiding your skin of hydration. You could lose weight. And your health will thank you. A few areas in which your health will likely improve are less risk of various cancers, less risk of heart disease, improved liver function and a better sex life.
Alternative Activities to Drinking
Some people need distractions to keep from drinking, and that is perfectly fine. You might find it challenging in the early days to find alternative activities to do, particularly once you realize just how much of your life revolved around drinking. One of the best alternative activities is to exercise. You may have to start small with a few short walks a week; however, push yourself to do more each week and you will feel amazing in no time. You should seek out local group activities, and take an interest in new hobbies, such as learn a specific dance, become fluent in a new language or perfect the art of baking.
Treatments for Alcohol Abuse
Alcohol and depression can ruin your life; however, you can take steps to prevent disaster from striking. You might join local meetings, such as a 12-step program, to speak with other people who are going through the same situation. You can also seek outpatient or inpatient rehabilitation programs. These will cost money and you may have to take time off work; however, they are typically quite effective, and your insurance or employer might pay for it.
Additional Ways to Fight Depression
If you are depressed, it is important to seek help. You should speak to your doctor, and they will advise you of the best way to move forward. You can also join a support group, go to weekly therapy, take prescription medication or go to a treatment facility.
Depression is a serious matter, and alcohol can make it worse. You should immediately speak with a medical professional, family member, religious or spiritual leader or another trustworthy person if you ever have thoughts of suicide.