Depression Relapse Can Trigger Addiction Relapse
A woman who’s experienced depression and alcohol addiction has a challenging road before her. The journey can be long and difficult just getting sober and clear of depression symptoms. But what can happen after that? Understanding depression relapse risk is a big part of keeping addiction under control.
Alcohol Addiction Much Like Depression
Just like addiction, depression can worm its way back into a person’s life in slippery ways. The risk for future depressive episodes is clearly higher once you have had even one period of depression. Once you’ve been that low before, your body and mind have the potential of going there again. These pathways never get totally removed when you recover from depression, just dormant.
Grass becomes dormant and brown over the winter, appearing dead and lifeless. However, the roots are often still intact beneath the ground. With proper stimulation (sunlight, water, and warmth), grass grows green and healthy again. With the right mix of circumstances and triggers, a person who had once recovered from depression can find their depression roots tingling with new life.
Once the depression roots are recharged, the mindset can more easily turn towards negativity and hopelessness. A woman experiencing this can begin to feel out of control, wondering how she is now slipping back into the dark hole of depression. As her depression progresses, her alcohol rehab recovery experience may feel very distant at that moment. This can leave her grasping in desperation for relief and hope.
Alcohol Rehab Skills Important To Prevent Depression
At this point, it’s hopeful that she reaches out to someone in her alcohol rehab support network or someone who understands her depression for help. Their support can help her use her healthy coping skills with better effectiveness. Friends and family can help strengthen her connection with her alcohol rehab coping skills. She can come back out of the hole without having an alcohol addiction relapse.
If she does not reach out or has trouble making that connection, she may slip further into her depression. Her depression is itself a huge addiction relapse trigger, and quite likely the emotional pathway that lead her to addiction in the first place. The longer her depression slide goes undetected or unhelped, the better her chance of reaching for drugs or alcohol.
Depression triggers are important to be aware of because they can sometimes change. Also, they can come from the same root problem but look very different from past triggers. A relapse (or near relapse) can be helpful in better identifying true threats for future depressive episodes. Just like with addiction, consistent awareness is vital for preventing depression relapse.