Many people use drugs or alcohol as an escape from reality. Substance abuse can heighten or exacerbate underlying mental health illnesses. Certain drugs can cause paranoia, depression, and anxiety. Alcohol is a depressant and drinking alcohol might worsen the symptoms of depression.
When a person uses drugs or alcohol regularly, he or she will build a tolerance to the pleasurable effects. The brain develops a dependence to function, but using drugs or alcohol can cause brain damage, liver failure, seizures, heart attack or stroke. Addiction leads to many physical and mental health issues. Drugs and alcohol can cause a person to overdose or lead to an early death.
People who have a mental health disorder often use drugs to alleviate the symptoms of their mental illness. When people self-medicate, mental health problems are temporarily masked. Some drugs can be associated with the development of certain disorders. Instead of bringing relief, drugs can lead to new problems.
Substance abuse can cause many types of mental health illnesses. Psychosis, delirium, amnesia disorder, and perceptual disorders can develop from regular use. Disruptive sleep patterns, shakiness, disorientation, irritability, anxiety disorders, and depression can stem from heavy drug use.
Some substances affect memory and can cause persisting dementia or amnesia. Long-term drug use can cause an inability to retain new memories or access old ones. Drugs damage parts of the brain that control memory retention.
Not everyone reacts the same way to each drug. One drug may cause a person to experience psychosis, but another person taking the same drug might have symptoms of anxiety. Drugs such as cocaine have been associated with the psychotic disorders. Certain drugs or alcohol can accelerate symptoms of depression and anxiety.
People living with drug addiction and mental disorders need treatment for a dual diagnosis. It can be hard to treat a mental illness that is covered by a drug addiction. Healing will take time, but recovery is worth the effort. Sometimes people will need medication prescribed by a medical professional who can manage and monitor progress in recovery.
If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction or substance abuse, do not wait. Get help today. Nexus Recovery Services specializes in addiction treatment for mental health issues and addiction. Our mission is to provide tools and support for every client’s seamless transition into a meaningful and fulfilling life of sobriety. We offer a free and confidential consultation. Call us to get started:310-881-9151