Alcoholism and Mental Illness

For millions of Americans struggling with alcohol or other drug addiction, there are also many Americans who are living with ongoing mental health issues. The correlation between the two often stems from an endless cycle of attempting to self-medicate with the use of alcohol or drugs as a way to mitigate any presenting symptoms of mental health conditions. 

The effects of alcohol consumption can exacerbate symptoms of mental illness, including depressive disorders, anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder, or other psychiatric symptoms from mood disorders or psychiatric disorders. Participating in a dual diagnosis treatment program is the best method to treat your alcohol use disorders and mental health conditions. This treatment will support you in healing from your alcohol addiction and develop the tools to manage your presenting symptoms of mental health disorders. 

If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction, call WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab today at (877) 640-7820 to learn how we can help.

Can Mental Illness Cause Alcohol Abuse?

Although mental illness and alcohol abuse can often go hand in hand, the cause of your alcohol dependence is not caused directly by your mental health conditions. However, when attempting to manage your mental disorder without the proper support of a mental health therapist or coping skills, the allure of escape through alcohol abuse can quickly draw someone in. 

While drinking alcohol can momentarily make someone feel as though the presenting symptoms of your mental disorder are being treated and reduced, the more you drink alcohol, the more challenging it can be to manage your mental health disorders. As alcohol is a depressant, if you are already living with a depressive disorder or a mood disorder, the use of alcohol can significantly impact your emotions, often leading to an increased feeling of depression and anxiety.

Along with alcohol, learn about other common household drugs here: 

Healing the Root Causes of Alcoholism

When you first began drinking alcohol, it most likely started as a recreational activity with no intention of turning into an alcohol use disorder. Your alcohol abuse progressed over time due to several reasons, including emotions, traumas, or personal beliefs that have impacted how you interact and perceive the world around you. 

An effective alcohol treatment program will support patients in gaining an understanding of the root causes of their alcohol abuse and addiction. Your treatment programs will incorporate various evidence-based therapy methods to help patients dive deep into the underlying causes of their alcohol addiction and substance abuse. Common therapy methods that are used to treat alcohol use disorders are: 

  • Cognitive Behavioral therapy 
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy 
  • Dual Diagnosis treatment 
  • Medication-assisted treatment 
  • 12-step addiction recovery groups 
  • Life skills development 
  • Relapse prevention education 
  • Trauma therapy 

With the support of addiction counselors, you can safely address the emotions and traumas that have influenced your addictive behaviors in the past. Patients will be encouraged to examine their relationship between alcohol, emotional regulation, and coping. You will gain an understanding of your triggers and how best to manage any potential stressors or triggers in the future without turning to alcohol abuse as a method of coping. 

Dual Diagnosis Treatment at WhiteSands

At WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab, we offer a comprehensive approach to addiction and mental health treatment within our dual diagnosis treatment programs. Your history with substance abuse is unique to you and developed for your own personal reasons. Our dedicated team of addiction counselors honors the journey you have been on throughout your alcohol use disorders and want to provide you with a safe, comfortable environment to heal from your alcoholism and mental health disorders. 

Whether you choose an inpatient rehab program or outpatient treatment, you will be supported by our team of compassionate counselors to help you learn how to manage your mental health disorders and heal from the root causes of your alcohol abuse. Contact WhiteSands today to start your road to addiction recovery in Florida

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.

About the Author

Jackie has been involved in the substance abuse and addiction treatment sector for over five years and this is something that she is truly eager about. She has a passion for writing and continuously works to create informative pieces that not only educate and inform the public about the disease of addiction but also provide solutions for those who struggle with drug and alcohol abuse.