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How Alcohol Can Impact Depression

Person feeling the effects of alcohol and depression

The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) estimates that about 18 million American adults suffer from an alcohol use disorder (AUD). That’s one in every 12 adults. The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) estimates that more than 16 million American adults have had at least one major depressive episode in the past year. That’s one in every 10 adults. With those numbers, there has to be a connection between alcohol and depression.

If you’re curious about the effects of alcohol and the depression symptoms that come with them, you should seek professional help. Samba Recovery offers alcohol addiction treatment in Georgia with a knowledgeable and experienced staff dedicated to helping patients achieve long-term sobriety and reach their recovery goals. Call 888.505.8279 to get started on overcoming alcohol addiction today.

What Are the Common Effects of Alcohol Abuse?

The effects of alcohol abuse can be short-term or long-term. Short-term effects may include:

  • Slurred speech
  • Impaired coordination
  • Slowed reaction time
  • Sleepiness or drowsiness

However, impaired judgment is the most pronounced short-term adverse effect of struggling with alcohol abuse. You may be unable to decide what’s best for yourself or your loved ones. This can lead to dangerous and even life-threatening situations and pave the way for long-term effects of struggling with alcohol abuse that may include:

  • Liver damage
  • Heart disease
  • Cancer
  • Brain damage
  • Memory problems
  • Sexual dysfunction

It is well-known that alcohol abuse can have devastating consequences for the drinker in the short and long run. But what is less well known is that alcohol abuse can also cause congenital disabilities in children born to pregnant women who drink. Several congenital disabilities can be caused by alcohol abuse, but some of the most common ones include fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) and alcohol-related neurodevelopmental disorder (ARND).

What Are the Common Signs of Depression?

The common signs of depression include:

  • Feelings of sadness, emptiness, or hopelessness
  • Loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed
  • Appetite or weight changes
  • Sleep pattern changes
  • Anger or irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Restlessness

Along with feelings of worthlessness or guilt, thoughts of death or suicide are common for people struggling with depression. Sometimes depression is a mental health disorder causing feelings of sadness, emptiness, and hopelessness. Other times, depression can be a symptom of another mental health disorder—such as addiction. In either of these cases, depression can be so severe that someone struggling with it contemplates suicide. Thoughts of death or suicide are not uncommon for people struggling with depression.

If you are experiencing thoughts of death or suicide, getting professional help is vital. There are many resources available to you, including hotlines and support groups. You aren’t alone in this struggle.

What Is the Connection Between Alcohol and Depression?

Alcohol is a depressant. This means that it slows down your central nervous system. When you drink alcohol, you may feel relaxed and happy. But these feelings are only temporary. In reality, alcohol can make your depression worse. Drinking alcohol can make it challenging to stick to a depression treatment plan. It can also make your depression symptoms worse. And if you’re taking medication for depression, drinking alcohol can make the medication less effective.

If you’re struggling with depression, it’s essential to avoid drinking alcohol altogether. Depression symptoms can also affect alcohol abuse and addiction. When someone struggles with depression, they may turn to alcohol as a way to self-medicate. This can lead to addiction to alcohol or at least extended abuse of it. Addiction to alcohol and depression are two co-occurring disorders that often feed into each other. It is crucial for people struggling with both disorders to seek professional help.

Find Alcohol Addiction Treatment at Samba Recovery in Georgia

Alcohol abuse can have short-term and long-term effects on your health. It can also worsen the symptoms of depression. If you’re struggling with an addiction to alcohol and depression, it’s essential to seek treatment as soon as possible to overcome your addiction and live a healthy, happy life. Samba Recovery offers evidence-based treatment for alcoholism and co-occurring mental health disorders like depression. Contact Samba Recovery today at 888.505.8279 or reach out online to learn more about our alcohol addiction treatment programs in Georgia.