What is alcohol depression? How long does it take? How to heal it?

Alcohol depression is an extremely broad concept. Psychologists, psychiatrists and psychotherapists recognize its dual nature. They believe that it is both the result (primary alcoholism with secondary depression) and the cause (primary depression with secondary alcoholism) of alcohol abuse. 

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An addicted person drinks because they feel depressed, and they feel this way because they drink. The vicious circle is closed, but fortunately there is an effective way to break it. It is a comprehensive therapy for alcoholism, especially psychotherapy.

Causes of alcoholism

Depression and other mental disorders can therefore lead to a risk of addiction. The causes of alcoholism are complex and come from a variety of factors. These are mainly biological, genetic, personality, environmental, cultural and social factors. Researchers also report that pre-existing alcoholism in the family may lead to behaviors ending in alcohol abuse. This is because environmental factors take their toll on all members of the alcoholic’s family. Alcohol depression is the easiest to cure with the support of loved ones. For family members of alcoholics, this can be a particularly difficult task.

The above factors of alcohol dependence do increase the risk of developing alcoholism, but they do not determine it. The alcoholic’s gene in the body of an alcoholic does not lead to a congenital disorder. It is mainly the way of upbringing, habits, values ​​instilled by members of the closest environment that determine the behavior that will be undertaken by a member of an alcoholic’s family in the future.

Symptoms of alcohol depression


Although alcoholics often hide their own difficulties, those closest to them may notice several indications of addiction. An addict drinks often, alone, not necessarily large doses of alcohol. He gradually loses control over the amount of drink drunk. He then fails to control his own body and behavior until his drinking episodes end in loss of consciousness. When depression joins the addiction, even more symptoms are perceived.

In addition to the occurrence of symptoms typical of a depressed mood, when the patient is affected by depression, there is also a strong addiction to the narcotic substance. It is alcohol. An addict suffering from this mental disorder experiences depression, lack of self-confidence, pessimism, guilt, anxiety and stress. He is also characterized by low self-esteem and inability to experience joy. Long-term depression may lead to suicide attempts.

When depression occurs at the time of withdrawal from alcohol, its symptoms are also associated with craving alcohol. The first symptoms of the withdrawal syndrome appear up to 36 hours after the sudden withdrawal of alcohol. The most common are headaches and dizziness, irritability, stress, insomnia, tremors, loss of appetite, hallucinations, delusions, and epileptic seizures. This type of depression usually clears up on its own.

Secondary alcohol depression, which is a direct consequence of alcohol abuse, makes the patient feel very bad. He experiences a depressed mood and his overall mental and physical health gradually deteriorates. Every day he is depressed, tired, has no sense of life, he lacks self-confidence. He reaches for alcohol to feel relaxed even for a moment.

How long does alcohol depression last?

Unfortunately, no one really knows the answer to the question of how long does depression last or will last. The lower time limit for defining affective disorder is two weeks. Symptoms and disorders that appear as a consequence of untreated depression can last a long time, sometimes even for the life of the alcoholic. They also often lead to premature death.

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Untreated depression can lead to permanent damage to the patient’s health and even threaten his life. Appropriate treatment of the disorder should focus not only on it, but also on the accompanying alcoholism. Therefore, a comprehensive approach to the treatment of complex alcoholic disease associated with depression includes taking such therapeutic measures as: alcohol insert, alcohol detox, and, above all, psychotherapy of alcoholism. The latter, as the basic form of treatment of addiction, changes the mental attitude of the alcoholic and breaks the vicious circle in which he finds himself.

The fight is therefore waged against both addiction and depression. Since alcoholism is considered an incurable but “silencing” disease, it is important that treatment is as successful as possible, with the highest level of effectiveness. Maintaining abstinence for the die-hard alcoholic may prove easier than it seems. All you need is the help of experienced specialists.


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