Alcoholism And Depression - A Risk Of Bone Fractures And Osteoporosis
Alcoholism and depression is a double whammy disease. Alcoholism is defined as chronic drinking that interferes with one’s personal, family or professional life.
Depression on the other hand is an illness that involves brain thoughts and is characterized by depressive disorders such as feelings of hopelessness, feelings of extreme sadness loss of appetite, loss of concentration, and suicidal thoughts - to name a few.
Alcoholism and depression go hand in hand and tend to activate or reinforce the other. Depression is a common cause of alcoholism because a depressed person seeking solutions for his or her problems and getting frustrated because there seems to be no solution might turn to alcohol in desperation. What they don’t realize is that alcohol in itself is a depressant, which is only going to make matters worse.
Whichever way you look at it, if you are afflicted with this two-fold disease of alcoholism and depression, it becomes a vicious cycle. You drink to self medicate depression, you get more depressed because you’ve consumed a depressant, so you drink some more to feel good..... the cycle continues.
When someone is suffering from both alcoholism and depression, the burden becomes very heavy for that person because each of these conditions is considered a separate disease that shortens life expectancy, from suicide to life threatening diseases, including cancer of the pancreas, liver, esophagus, and even bone fractures and osteoporosis.
Alcoholics are very susceptible to depression, mood changes and even violent behavior, and their suicide rate is more than double compared to that of the general population.
What Causes Alcoholism And Depression?
The question that is often pondered on is which one of these two conditions brings on the other? Some might say that a person going through depression turns to alcohol for comfort, but could it also be that one might be an alcoholic and the excessive drinking creates depression?
Whichever way you view it, the fact remains that alcohol itself is a depressant and it feeds depressive symptoms. Therefore it might be accurate to say that alcohol contributes to the development of depression and creates the symptoms of alcoholism and depression.
The depression caused by alcohol starts in the body by first lowering the serotonin and norepinephrine levels in the brain. These are chemicals responsible for producing good feelings of normalcy and well being. The following are all factors that foster alcoholism and depression.
Common Causes of Alcoholism:
*Childhood Abuse and Experiences
*Psychological Stress and need for Relief from Anxiety
*Peer Pressure and Social Acceptance
*Conflict within relationships
*Low self esteem
Common Causes of Depression:
*Stressful and traumatic life events
*Job loss and financial difficulties,
*Medical conditions, such as hypothyroidism
*Abandonment or rejection
*Physical or psychological abuse
*Periodic social drinking that turns to frequent indulgence
Symptoms Of Alcoholism And Depression
Here is a list of common alcoholism symptoms:
*Inappropriate use or abuse of alcohol
*The urge to drink large quantities of alcohol in the quest to achieve a desired feeling
Here are 10 signs of depression:
*Loss of appetite or eating too much
*Decreased Interest and Pleasure in Daily Activities
*Feelings of guilt or worthlessness
*Fatigue and Loss of Energy
*Loss of Concentration
*Loss of interest in socializing with friends and family
*Restlessness or moodiness
*Overwhelming feelings and hopelessness
Treating Alcoholism and Depression
Alcoholism and depression is an intertwined two-fold disease, and even though one might fuel the other, different herbs and supplements are used to treat them. If you suffer from alcoholism and depression, the first step in curing yourself is to stop drinking, since alcohol itself is a depressant.
Here you will find separate treatments for both conditions. Follow the steps below to cure alcoholism, and then you can take the dietary supplements and nutrients recommended to lift your mood and cure the depression.
Alcoholism is a chronic disease and requires early intervention. In order to make progress in healing, adequate attention must be given to the person with alcohol dependence. If you think you are addicted to alcohol and are experiencing depression symptoms, admit to yourself that you have a problem and be willing to seek medical attention.
This is not a condition that you can just wish away and you need all the care and support of family members so do not shun your loved ones who might want to help.
If you seek medical help, you will probably be prescribed treatment in phases, which might start off with detoxification which will require you to go cold turkey and abstain from alcohol use. The detoxification process alone may take about a week, after which you will be assessed and treated for any health conditions you might have contracted from the excessive drinking. From there on, you will undergo psychotherapy, medication and recovery procedures.
Natural herbal remedies can also be employed to treat your condition. And many of them have been used with much success. Whichever way you choose to get treatment, the most important thing is to do it and commit to it as well.
The following natural remedies have been used for treating alcoholism with much success and you can employ them if you do not wish to use conventional medication to get well.
Bitter Gourd: For the natural detoxification process, the juice extract from bitter gourd leaves can be used. It purifies the blood and strengthens the liver and lungs. Add 2-3 tablespoon of the extract to a glass of butter milk and drink it to clear the toxic materials from your body. This regimen has to be followed daily for at least 25-30 days.
Celery Juice Extract: To curb cravings for alcohol, try using celery juice extract. Mix half a glass of celery juice with a glass of water and drink once or twice a day depending on how strong your cravings are. This is very effective in eliminating toxic materials from your system.
Milk Thistle: Is one of the best known and respected herbs for protecting the liver. It is used for eliminating toxins from the liver. The liver can become sluggish in eliminating all the toxins we put in our body every day so taking milk thistle helps it to better eliminate them including alcohol. Be sure to purchase milk thistle standardized for at least 70% of the active antioxidant component silymarin. Recommended dosage is 250 mg. taken three times daily between meals.
Kava Kava: Sleeping is a big problem for recovering alcoholics so if you have trouble sleeping whilst following the detoxification program, you can take the herb called Kava Kava. It is a natural sedative used to induce sleepiness. Suggested intake is 250 mg. three times daily.
Kudzu: The Kudzu root originates from China and Japan, and has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries to reduce cravings for alcohol intake. Scientists have also acknowledged that Kudzu root can also strengthen the liver’s ability to eliminate toxins from the body. Follow the directions on the supplements label.
Ashwagandha: This Indian ginseng is an antioxidant which can improve brain function and increase mental activity, whilst decreasing stress. Less stress means calm nerves, which in turn lessens the urge to drink, thus giving you a stronger stance against alcohol. A daily dosage of 100 mg is recommended for optimal effect. As usual with all natural remedies, consistency and patience is required to reap optimal effects.
About 230 million prescriptions for antidepressants are written every year to treat this disease, but rate of depression is still climbing. Studies have shown that talking a walk works just the same as taking an antidepressant. So if think of it, why not take a walk instead?
Researchers at the Duke University Medical School studied two groups of people, where one group was given antidepressant and other group was only instructed to exercise without antidepressants. After a period of four months, 47 percent of the people who took antidepressant drugs were no longer depressed. Likewise, 45 percent of the people who exercised without drugs were also no longer depressed. This proved that exercise worked just as well as drugs.
Cognitive Therapy is another method you can utilize to cure depression. A lot of people are prone to thinking and confessing the negative when things don’t go well in their lives. Common sayings such as ”I am a total failure”, “I never get a break”, “I just can’t control myself”, “I am no damn good”, are all thoughts and statements that foster depression.
This therapy emphasizes that your feelings results from the messages you give yourself, therefore you should learn to change the way you think about things by changing your basic values and beliefs. If you are able to do this, you will experience lasting and positive changes in your mood, outlook and productivity. You can learn more about cognitive therapy by visiting the website:www.abct.org
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, which involves the use magnets has also been shown to cure depression. This process entails holding an electromagnetic coil to the head and turning on an electric current to send magnetic waves into the brain.
Studies conducted by doctors at the University of Pennsylvania had participants partake in this process for 35 minutes for five days a week for a duration of six weeks.
This treatment has been successful for patients whose depression is treatment-resistant. Find out more about the treatment by clicking this underlined link nami.
For treatment using dietary nutrients, such as vitamins, herbs and supplements,
click on this underlined link.
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