It is common knowledge that alcohol is a downer, causing you to have less energy and decreased moods. However, individuals still turn to alcohol to self-medicate symptoms of depression. Doing this can worsen symptoms of depression, causing a severe negative impact on one’s mental state. By understanding the effect of alcohol on depression, you can make a more informed decision regarding your use and learn about healthier options for treating depression.


Long-Term Alcohol Abuse Can Worsen Depression


Many people use alcohol to cope with depression symptoms because of the sedative effects the substance elicits. While the person may experience relief at first, this is only temporary. Long-term alcohol use can cause various problems in a person’s life that can worsen depression. For example, some individuals who develop alcoholism find themselves without a job, have financial trouble, and have problems with family. As the person continues to drink, more problems will occur, causing a vicious cycle to repeat. Mild symptoms may become severe over time, worsening depression in the long run.


Alcohol Makes Antidepressants Less Effective


For patients struggling with depression, doctors may prescribe antidepressants. While these medications can help reduce depression symptoms, using alcohol alongside them can warrant them less effective. Side effects can also become severe as you use alcohol while taking antidepressants, causing harm to you and those around you. In some cases, mixing alcohol and antidepressants can be fatal.


Treating Depression and Alcoholism


A person that struggles with addiction and a mental health disorder has a co-occurring disorder. The best way to treat a co-occurring disorder is to find a program that offers this specific type of care for its patients. Numerous treatment programs are available throughout the country, and many remain open during COVID-19. By addressing both conditions simultaneously, the person has a better chance at getting sober and maintaining lifelong recovery. 


The relationship between alcohol and depression is a close one because one can affect the other. As depression symptoms worsen, individuals are likely to turn to alcohol to self-medicate. However, long-term alcohol abuse can worsen depression symptoms, causing the cycle to repeat. To treat both conditions, co-occurring disorder treatment is recommended. We offer such services at Alta Loma Transformational Services for men of all ages and backgrounds. Located in Georgetown, TX, we take pride in giving patients comprehensive care that leads to lifelong sobriety. Call us today to learn more about our programs at (866) 457-3843.