There’s a heavy focus on the physical side effects of drug abuse in the media today. What many don’t realize is you can also develop mental disorders from drug use. The overuse of legal substances like nicotine, caffeine, and even vaporizers can cause anxiety, sleep disturbances, and other issues. Some of these issues may mimic mental illness at times.
The more serious concerns come from the abuse of alcohol and illegal substances. In these cases, we’ll focus on common mental disorders that develop from the abuse of opiates, cocaine, amphetamines, and other illicit substances. If you or someone you love is ready to seek treatment to overcome dependency to any substance, our addiction treatment center is always one call away.
Substance-Induced Mood Disorder
If you’re going to develop mental disorders from drug use, this is one of the most likely occurrences. It can last for a period of weeks or months but isn’t normally permanent. It’s caused by chemical changes in the brain that affect how you think, feel, and behave. Many drugs change the amount of certain chemicals in the brain. As a result, you may undergo further fluctuations when you stop using a drug.
Some of the mood issues you may experience during or after drug use include:
- Low sex drive
- Low energy
- Thoughts of hopelessness or worthlessness
- Inability to focus or concentrate
It’s common to feel guilt, regret, and other negative emotions while recovering from drug or alcohol use issues. If you’re diagnosed with this mood disorder, you may experience other symptoms that make those emotions even more difficult to handle. It’s important to seek professional help before and after detoxing. This is to ensure your emotional and physical needs are met in a healthy manner.
Substance-Induced Psychotic Disorder
Also known as substance-induced psychosis or SIP, this is one of the more common mental disorders resulting from drug use. It often develops during the detox process. However, it may set in at other points in the substance abuse cycle as well.
In order to receive a diagnosis of substance-induced psychotic disorder, you must suffer from delusions or hallucinations that occur shortly after the consumption of a medication or drug. A trained mental health or substance abuse professional will use DSM-IV criteria to determine if the hallucinations or delusions are directly related to substance use and aren’t better attributed to delirium or another mental health disorder.
There is some research suggesting substance-induced psychosis can lead to schizophrenia. One study found that the following risk factors increased the chances of a person developing schizophrenia after a diagnosis of SIP:
- Male gender
- Diagnosis of SIP at a young age
- Multiple occurrences of SIP
- Lengthy hospital stays for treatment
This study also found that people misusing marijuana were more likely to develop schizophrenia after a SIP diagnosis. Alcohol presented the lowest risk.
Does Mental Illness Set You Up for Drug Use?
Research has shown that approximately 50% of people suffering from mental illness will also struggle with substance misuse at some point in their lives. It’s also estimated that approximately 60% of adolescents seeking treatment for substance abuse meet the criteria for some form of mental illness.
There is a strong correlation between mental illness and substance misuse. However, it doesn’t mean that everyone suffering from depression, anxiety, or other mental issues will turn to a substance. Impulsivity is a symptom of many mental illnesses, and some people simply have addictive personalities and tend to overuse anything that brings pleasure or satisfaction.
The Challenge of Mental Disorders from Drug Use
If you’re diagnosed with major depression in addition to struggling with substance use issues, you’re more likely to relapse after treatment. One study of 250 patients found that higher risks of relapse occurred for those struggling with depression and the abuse of a substance.
That doesn’t mean you can’t fully recover and live your best life if you develop mental disorders from drug use. It does mean you need a dual diagnosis treatment center with the resources to handle your mental, physical, and spiritual needs.
A Chance for Renewal
The development of mental disorders from drug use is more common than you might like to think. If you or someone you love is struggling to control the use of any substance, Phoenix Rising can help with substance abuse treatment in Palm Springs, California. Call us at 855.232.8211 to take that first step toward renewal and recovery today.