Many people who experience depression take medication to help them feel better and overcome their depression. Medication can be very helpful to such individuals, helping them to rid themselves of the feelings of hopelessness and unhappiness. Studies have found, furthermore, that medication is even more effective when partnered with a supportive environment and good therapy. The two together can help restore feelings of well-being, and help overcome depression.
There are many ways to go about getting medication for depression. However, it usually requires a trip to a doctor and a referral to a psychiatrist or psychologist. Only someone who is specifically trained to diagnose mental conditions states should prescribe depression medication. Periodic visits to someone who can listen can also be helpful in dispelling depression. This is also where having a good support system comes in. Friends and family can be very helpful, if they are supportive. Such support is more effective than medication alone.
Unfortunately, there is another form of medication for depression. By using alcohol and illegal drugs, many people “self medicate” themselves for depression. Many of them do not even realize that they are depressed. All they know is that they feel bad, and the only way to feel better is to get drunk or engage in illicit activities. Self medication is quite common because many people just assume that life is bad, and the weekends were made for getting smashed or high. They feel good while on the alcohol or drugs, so they think that nothing is wrong, other than life in general.
Additionally, self medication allows depressed people to relieve their depressed feelings without the stigma of visiting a “head shrink.” For many people, going to someone who is supposed to treat mental conditions would be admitting that there is something wrong with the mind. That is a hard thing to overcome, especially since few people want to advertise that they have mental problems. So it is understandable that they would prefer to just feel better in their own way.
The problem with self medication, though, is that it does nothing to break the cycle of depression. In fact, it only adds to the depression. Once the effects of the alcohol or drugs wear off, the person often “crashes,” feeling worse than before. The person feels worse, and the only way to feel better is to get drunk or high again. And the cycle perpetuates itself. Sometimes it becomes bad enough that the behavior is not just a weekend occurrence, but expands to disrupt work and family life during the week.
Medication, when administered by a professional, can be a helpful tool in overcoming depression. Self medication through alcohol and illegal drugs, however, is destructive and rarely does it help someone overcome depression. And it adds the problems associated with addiction on top of the problems of depression. Feelings of depression should be explored by people qualified to help you overcome your depression. This way, proper help and appropriate medication can be found to aid you as you move out of depression.
Learn more about depression and how you can overcome it by visiting our Helpful site on Depression and Hopelessness