A range of factors can cause addiction, and sometimes those factors involve mood disorders or mental health disorders. Sometimes, addiction itself can be a factor in the development of a mental health disorder. There is a connection between anxiety and addiction. Take a closer look at that connection, how it forms and how it plays a role in treatment.
Self-Medicating Anxiety With Drugs or Alcohol
As many as half of all those individuals who struggle with addiction also struggle with anxiety or a combination of anxiety and other mental health concerns. It is easy to see, therefore, that there is a link between addiction and anxiety. Often, the root of the problem is the anxiety, which can lead to addiction.
When someone struggles with anxiety, finding any comfort or relief is the goal. Sadly, some individuals find temporary relief with the help of heavy drug or alcohol use. While that might seem like it can help in the short term, it only leads to bigger and more significant problems. Namely, self-medication through drugs and alcohol can lead to an addiction.
Developing Anxiety Because of Substance Abuse
While having anxiety can often lead to an addiction, the opposite is also possible. This happens when a person without anxiety develops the condition because of an addiction.
Once a person is addicted to drugs or alcohol, there are a number of side effects that can appear. While some of the more commonly known symptoms of addiction are physical, mental health can also be negatively impacted. A person might start to experience anxiety in all kinds of forms.
It is possible to develop a phobia as a result of addiction. Some people might feel anxious in crowds, and they can become paranoid when too many people are around. Others might struggle with a generalized anxiety disorder.
Withdrawal and Relapse
The connection between anxiety and addiction can become even stronger during withdrawal. If clients aren’t in a proper detox facility, they can experience stronger anxiety than usual at this time. Without supervision, this can be dangerous.
Plus, experiencing anxiety can make some clients feel like sobriety isn’t possible for them. If clients experience significant anxiety during withdrawal, it’s important to take steps to ensure that they avoid any potential triggers for relapse. This might mean avoiding social situations or staying away from drug-using friends.
Withdrawal and relapse can be a difficult and dangerous cycle to break. However, with access to professional support and the right resources, clients know that any resurgence of anxiety symptoms is just a short-term concern.
Treating Anxiety and Addiction at the Same Time
The best way to deal with both anxiety and addiction is to treat them at the same time. This is known as dual diagnosis treatment. Simultaneous treatment is the ideal solution because it prevents the cause of addiction from coming back afterward. At Serenity House Detox & Recovery, treatment can include some or all of the following:
- Treatment for co occurring disorders: Treating anxiety and addiction at the same time can be difficult, but it is the best way to ensure success. Dual diagnosis treatment involves using a variety of treatments to address both disorders simultaneously. This may include therapy, medication, and detox.
- Individual counseling: In one-on-one sessions, you’ll talk about the issues that led to your addiction and any co-occurring mental health disorders.
- 24/7 medical supervision and support: Our medical team is on call 24/7 to provide support and guidance as you detox and recover.
- Group and family therapy: Participating in group therapy sessions can help you see that you’re not alone in your struggles. Family therapy can improve communication and relationships within your support system.
- Behavioral therapy: Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is one type of behavioral therapy that can help you identify and change the thoughts and behaviors that contribute to addiction.
Anxiety and addiction are closely linked, so sobriety means addressing both issues. Serenity House Detox & Recovery offers two Florida locations so that you can begin recovery right away. Call 866.294.5306 to learn more about detox options in Fort Lauderdale or Jupiter, Florida.