Is there a 12 Step Program for Depression When Addicted to Alcohol?
Yes, there is a 12 step program for depression when you are addicted to alcohol. There are 12 step programs that focus more on the alcohol addiction, 12 step programs that focus on depression, and 12 step programs that split their focus between both.
12 Step Programs for Alcohol Addiction
The traditional 12 step programs for alcohol addiction are also known to help depression and suicidal ideation. According to the National Library of Medicine, depression is a major symptom of alcohol withdrawal and Alcoholic Anonymous a popular alcohol 12 step program is listed as a good resource for information and treatment of alcoholism.
The depression during alcohol withdrawal may have a variety of causes. These causes are:
- Chronic depression might be the reason for the alcoholism
- Loneliness during alcohol withdrawal
- Isolation during alcohol withdrawal
- Family issues caused by the alcoholism
- Loss of work due to the alcoholism
A 12 step program can help you work toward treating the addiction, the cause, and the depression.
12 Step Programs for Depression
When the depression causes the alcoholism, it is important to treat the depression as a disease whose symptom is alcoholism. 12 step programs for depression do this. During 12 step programs specifically designed to treat depression, the focus is on what the depression does rather than just alcoholism.
This change of focus is helpful when the main issue is depression. Depression is a very debilitating disease that can destroy your life as quickly as addiction to alcohol can. It is characterize by:
- Intense feelings of sadness
- Suicidal thoughts and feelings
- Feelings of worthlessness
- Low self-esteem
All of these characteristics are made worse by alcohol addiction. When depression causes alcoholism, the only way to treat the alcoholism is to correct the depression. If the underlying mental illness is not treated, the addict is likely to relapse even with 12 step treatment.
12 Step Programs for Dual Diagnosis and Comorbid Disorders
According to the National Institute on Health, many of the newer dual diagnosis 12 step groups are a better fit for those suffering from depression and a substance abuse disorder such as alcoholism. Since both addiction to alcohol and depression go hand in hand, treating both together only makes sense.
12 step programs for dual diagnosis patients often combine the steps for each individual program into a more comprehensive format. Each of the 12 steps is designed to function as both a step toward addition recovery and coping with a mental illness.
Finding the Right 12 Step Program for you
12 step programs are more effective when combined with a comprehensive treatment program. Treatment at a treatment center can help with both the depression and the alcoholism by combining medication, counseling, and 12 step treatment. Most people who engage in a complete treatment program succeed in their recovery from both illnesses.
To find a 12 step program in a treatment center, call 800-653-7143. We can help you find the treatment program that is right for you.