How Loneliness Fuels Addiction
A common misconception about loneliness is that it only happens when you are physically alone, but people can feel lonely even when surrounded by others as a result of any struggles they are dealing with. Here’s how to help someone with an addiction.
A prolonged feeling of loneliness can lead people to feel empty, alone, and even unwanted. Living in this mental state impacts a person’s overall mental health which can lead to several other conditions such as:
- Alcoholism and drug use or abuse
- Worsening or furthering the progression of Alzheimer’s disease
- Increase in antisocial behavior.
- Cardiovascular disease or stroke
- Decreased memory and learning capacity
- Depression and suicide
- Increased stress levels
- Compulsive behavior that results in poor decision making
It is common for people to downplay their addictions and illnesses, including prolonged loneliness and the depression it causes, which often results in people feeling trapped in their disorders and dysfunctional behaviors.
How to Help Someone with an Addiction
Comprehensive treatment is recommended for both depressions caused by loneliness and substance abuse. Many people find that intensive inpatient or outpatient treatment is necessary to curb addiction and learn healthy coping strategies for depression. The approach that offers the best chance at recovery will depend on the person, the seriousness of their symptoms, and their barriers to recovery.
If you have been diagnosed with depression, it is important for you to discuss with your doctor whether or not you are also at risk for a substance use disorder. Having an open and honest conversation with your healthcare provider will ensure you get the treatment you need.
For both depression and addiction, it is important that the person experiencing the disorders is motivated and works toward their recovery. The help you receive from loved ones and healthcare professionals should be used as tools and support systems, but they can’t get you all the way across the finish line. Continuing to work on healthy behaviors and being monitored by the appropriate care providers gives clients the chance they need at a successful recovery. Now’s the time when you find out how to help someone with an addiction. Contact us today to get started.