Overcoming the Doldrums of Depression in Recovery
Once a person has gone through the first stages of quitting substance abuse and have started their recovery at rehab, they can feel like their life is finally changing for the better, which it is. But as a person goes through their recovery, the initial feelings of success can feel thwarted by the difficulties of life. Depression may creep into the person’s life and be especially difficult to deal with since it is a complex feeling and it is a trigger for relapse. Within the first year of recovery, as many as 6 in 10 people have a relapse. Properly dealing with depression in recovery is not only important for a person’s wellbeing but also to prevent relapse.
What Depression in Recovery Does
Depression is an all-encompassing emotion. It can affect every facet of a person’s life, making everything feel like less. It causes a person to feel fatigued even after a full night’s rest. It brings about an apathetic demeanor. A person dealing with depression in recovery feels like they have been sapped of all of their energy, making relapse prevention techniques such as exercise even more difficult to bring themselves to do.
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Clinically, depression is a metal disorder that signifies that there is a chemical imbalance in the person’s brain. In many cases, doctors would prescribe medication to help fix the balance. Other forms of depression that come about due to a situation or emotional depression can require speaking to a therapist.
How to Deal With Depression in Early Recovery
There are various tips that can help you deal with depression in early recovery. The following outlines the basics to help you get back on track with your recovery in a more positive light.
- Self-pity can be dangerous during recovery. Avoid it. Concern for oneself can be justified but not when it causes you to be sucked into self-pity.
- Positive thinking is one of the best ways to deal with depression in recovery from addiction. While it may feel futile because depressive thoughts return instantly, the more you practice positive thinking, the easier it becomes to maintain.
- Visit a therapist that is able to help you with depression. There may be pain or issues that you need to work through to be able to see into a bright future.
- Be grateful for what you have and how far you’ve come. An attitude of gratefulness can make all the difference when things in your life don’t quite work out.
- Look to a higher power. Millions of people around the world have been helped out of dark places through a higher power and the belief in it.
- Check with a doctor to make sure you do not have a chemical imbalance that needs medications to rectify.
- Have a shower or hot bath, even when you don’t really want to. A refreshing shower or relaxing bath can make a bad day suddenly feel good.
- Make sure you get out of bed quickly every morning and try going out, even if it is just to window shop or take a walk in the park.
- No matter what has happened in your past, have unconditional love for yourself. You are the only you in this world – embrace your uniqueness. Self-love can help to improve your feelings of self-worth.
- Speak to a friend or loved one. If you don’t have anyone in your life, then find someone who you can share your feelings with.
Depression in recovery from addiction is just a hurdle on the road to a full, happy life. Get in touch with WhiteSands today for further help with depression during recovery.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.