Addiction impacts the lives of millions of people in the United States. Its effects can be serious and sometimes life-threatening. Without treatment, people living with addiction can experience harm to their mental and physical health and relationships. They may also face serious financial or legal trouble that affects their lives for years to come.
There are many personal, biological, and environmental factors that contribute to the development of an addiction. People with mental illness, including depression, are at risk of developing an addiction, especially if they begin to use substances to manage their symptoms. Researchers estimate that up to 20% of people who struggle with mood disorders, like depression, also struggle with substance abuse or addiction.
While momentarily effective at numbing painful emotions, self-medicating a mental illness with drugs or alcohol leads to an abundance of other problems, including addiction. Substance use often worsens depression and anxiety, interferes with sleep and other self-care, and complicates mental health treatment.
If you or someone you love lives with a dual diagnosis–a mental illness and a substance use disorder–you must receive treatment for both conditions to recover. Not all addiction treatment facilities offer specialized treatment for depression and addiction in New Jersey. To learn more about treating depression and addiction, reach out to the addiction specialists at Moving Mountains Recovery.
Depression is a mood disorder that generally involves feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and a lack of interest in activities that were once enjoyable. Major depression can impair a person’s ability to function in their daily life. Symptoms of depression include:
- Loss of interest or pleasure
- Feelings of emptiness
- Weight loss or gain
- Change in sleep–too much or too little
- Feelings of guilt and shame
When these symptoms are enough to interfere with a person’s daily functioning, they may receive a diagnosis of depression.
Sometimes, people with depression use drugs or alcohol to dull or numb the pain of their symptoms. This is called self-medication. Self-medicating may provide momentary relief from symptoms but can lead to many other serious problems, including addiction.
Dual Diagnosis Treatment for Depression and Addiction in New Jersey
When someone suffers from both depression and a substance use disorder (SUD), they must receive treatment for both conditions. Simply treating the addiction without addressing their depression is not effective in preventing relapse. Similarly, if the person only receives treatment for depression, their substance abuse may interfere with their ability to engage in the therapies effectively.
People can participate in treatment for depression and anxiety at the same time at a dual diagnosis program. Comprehensive addiction treatment can include therapies that are proven to relieve depression. Addiction treatment generally happens in stages. First, people go through a medically supervised detox program. Then, they participate in an addiction treatment program that combines evidence-based treatments and holistic therapies.
During treatment, people often participate in therapies that can help them identify and treat their depression. These include:
Group and Individual Therapy
During therapy sessions, people work with a therapist to process emotions, identify patterns, set goals, and increase healthy coping skills. Both group and individual therapy offer support, community, and reassurance that the person is not alone in their experiences with addiction and depression.
Often, doctors prescribe medications that can help manage the symptoms of withdrawal and help people manage the symptoms of their depression. There are several types of medications used to treat depression, including SSRIs, MAOIs, and atypical antidepressants. Doctors prescribe the correct type of antidepressant based on their client’s type of depression and treatment history.
This healing, holistic treatment approach helps people engage their senses and find joy in recovery from addiction and depression. Adventure therapy uses nature to help people get exercise, stay motivated, and discover resilience during individual or group treatment sessions.
To effectively treat both addiction and depression, people must receive comprehensive, informed treatment for both conditions simultaneously. If you or a loved one requires dual diagnosis treatment, Moving Mountains Recovery offers treatment for depression and anxiety in New Jersey.
Benefits of Outdoor Adventure Therapy During Treatment for Depression and Addiction
There is increasing demand for outdoor adventure therapy programs because of their numerous benefits in supporting addiction recovery. During adventure therapy sessions, people are immersed in nature in adventurous outdoor activities, including:
- Rock climbing
These and other outdoor adventure activities give people the chance to engage their senses and learn that they can do difficult things. This improved confidence often carries over into other areas of their life and can help people as they heal from depression and addiction.
Some of the reported benefits of adventure therapy in treatment for depression and addiction include:
- Increased ability to solve problems
- Better thinking and decision-making
- Improved clarity
- Better mood
- Improved sleep quality
- Sense of purpose
- Less boredom
- Decreased ADD/ADHD symptoms
- Less anxiety
Incorporating adventure therapy into treatment for depression and addiction is an important part of holistic substance abuse treatment programs. At Moving Mountains Recovery, we want to give people the tools and resources they need to recover from depression and addiction so they can live the healthy, fulfilling lives they choose.
Find Treatment for Depression and Addiction in New Jersey Today
If you or someone you love require addiction treatment or want to learn more about our programs, reach out to the staff at Moving Mountains Recovery. Don’t wait another day for the treatment you need. Call today to get started.