When referring to substance abuse, hitting rock bottom is common occurrence. The phrase is often heard or used to mean there is no further way down. Many people consider it another way of stating, it’s the end of the road. Hitting rock bottom depression occurs for those suffering from long bouts of debilitating mental health issues. It can exacerbate substance abuse, or push individuals toward substances like drugs or alcohol to seek relief.
Rock bottom is a point at which symptoms of depression are at the most severe and easily their most debilitating. This is often accompanied by feelings of hopelessness and despair, as well as thoughts of suicide. At this stage, a person may feel that there’s no way out or that nothing will ever get better. They may also have lost interest in things that once brought them joy.
But what is actually involved in hitting rock bottom depression, what impact can it have on a person, how can it be treated. Further, how is depression linked to substance abuse? If you’ve ever pondered any of these questions, read on below to finally get some answers!
What Is Rock Bottom?
Hitting rock bottom is a phrase often used negatively to define a person who may be experiencing the worst symptoms of their condition. It can be a very impactful and difficult time.
Though rock bottom is often a treacherous point in battling depression, it is actually a very important or pivotal step. Many say that rock bottom often helps people realize the gravity of their condition. Symptoms and associated complications become clear, and individuals are often more likely to reach out for help once they’ve reached this turning point. Alternatively, family members and friends may be more in-tune with these symptoms and may begin actively finding solutions to help their loved one.
In terms of addiction, hitting rock bottom often carries telltale signs. Some of the symptoms of the lowest points of addiction include:
- Experiencing a serious health crisis, such as hospitalization, injury, or overdose
- Trouble with the law
- Being fired due to substance abuse
- Losing custody of children
- Divorce or relationship issues
- Lack of control over financials
- Feeling like there’s no escape
The severity of the symptoms when at rock bottom, a depression sufferer is very often extremely vulnerable. This is a very crucial time to offer help and to take care of depression sufferers. It can often be difficult to tell when someone has hit rock bottom, as many tend to close themselves off at such a point. This is why it is crucial to look out for others that may be suffering from depression and similar mental illnesses.
How Long Does Rock Bottom Last?
Unfortunately, it can be really difficult to ascertain how long rock bottom can last. Being in a state of rock bottom can last a very short period of time, or it can last a very long period of time. Often, if a person seeks help, rock bottom may only be experienced for a short while.
What can affect the length of rock bottom is whether the sufferer attempts to seek help for their condition. If the sufferer does not attempt to face their condition or make any attempt to counter it, it may carry catastrophic results.
How Depression Can Be impactful For A Person
Suffering from depression can have a very significant impact on a person, and for various reasons. In general, the quality of life is significantly reduced. The realities of depression mean that a person is more vulnerable to dangerous situations such as self-harm, suicidal ideation, and a need to find unhealthy coping mechanisms such as substance abuse.
Depression can also affect behavior and decision-making. This could lead to very destructive behaviors which would normally be out of character for the sufferer. For example, they might start drinking excessively or using drugs. There are various symptoms of depression that should be recognized to help prevent further issues like developing an addiction.
It should also be noted that depression can cause a sufferer to feel worthless, guilty, and even cause feelings of shame. This can lead to a loss of confidence and self-esteem and can result in a sufferer feeling like no one will love them again.
One of the main reasons depression often leads to substance abuse is that it can feel like there’s no escape. Misusing or abusing prescribed anti-depressant is a common occurrence.
Depression & Addiction As Co-Occurring Disorder
Depression and addiction often go hand-in-hand. Due to a number of factors, these co-occurring disorders are extremely impactful.
Depression can be caused by substance abuse, and substance abuse can often be caused by depression. When the two are diagnosed at the same time, this is referred to as a dual diagnosis. Many often wonder whether one comes before the other. This is why it can often be so difficult to ascertain whether the depression came about as a result of addiction, or whether the addiction came about from a need to escape symptoms of depression.
Many who are suffering from depression turn to alcohol and drugs as an escape from the negative and uncomfortable symptoms of their illness, and this can lead to a very intense cycle as the symptoms of addiction worsen over time.
Antidepressant Addiction Statistics
The reality of depression is that it’s a lifelong battle of learning to cope. Without access to mental health care, depression can worsen, leading a person to other harmful outlets and even seeking means to self-medicate.
According to the Addiction Center, about 10% of Americans take antidepressant medication. Of those, more than 60% have taken them for two years or long. Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, prescription drugs like antidepressant are the most commonly abused substances after alcohol.
Breaking out of patterns of addiction is notoriously difficult. Addiction recovery is a struggle for a variety of reason, a prominent one being the dependency that’s formed within the brain. Once chemicals from substances enter the brain, it can cause people to lose control of their impulses or crave more of it.
The result is that, what initially relieves negative symptoms can very quickly turn into abuse, which leads to dependency.
Frequently Asked Questions
Hitting rock bottom is an incredibly difficult phase in a depression sufferer’s life. It is a period in which symptoms of the disorder are most exaggerated and impactful. However, it is very often a very crucial step in a journey with depression, as it is a point at which the sufferer may admit that they need treatment and begin actively seeking it.
How do you know if you hit rock bottom?
You may begin to notice that you have hit rock bottom when your symptoms worsen, and when your mental health feels totally out of your own control. Recognizing that you have hit rock bottom is a very important step, as it is the first step towards an eventual recovery.
Is it good to hit rock bottom?
Though rock bottom is never a comfortable place to be, knowing that you are at your lowest point can help you to recognize that it is possible to get better and that you can eventually recover with enough time.
How do you motivate yourself to get out of rock bottom?
If you’ve hit rock bottom in life, it is best to take a look at exactly what factors in your life may have caused you to reach such a state. From there, you can begin to set yourself small and attainable goals to slowly motivate yourself out of a state of rock bottom depression.
Finding Help For Co-Occurring Depression & Substance Abuse
Hitting rock bottom depression or with substance abuse can be devastating and extremely impactful to everyday life. Finding hope through the storm can feel overwhelming, but addiction treatment provides a way to overcome substance abuse.
AspenRidge Recovery offers dual diagnosis care that addresses both substance misuse or addiction, as well as underlying mental health issues such as depression. We tailored our programs to fit individual needs so you find the care that works best for you. To learn more about our treatment methodology and options, contact us directly at 855-281-5588.