How Substance Abuse Contributes to An Anxiety Disorder

While many people have no cause for concern in consuming alcohol moderately, such as enjoying a few drinks or a glass of wine at a party or with dinner, deeper problems can occur for those with anxiety disorders necessitating an appropriately tailored form of substance abuse intervention in Miami. There are many instances of those with anxiety disorders experiencing a deterioration in their symptoms as a result of the use of alcohol or other substances.

Not only this, but there is a two to three times greater likelihood of such individuals having an alcohol or substance abuse disorder at some stage of their life, compared to the wider population. In around 20 per cent of Americans with an anxiety or mood disorder like depression, an alcohol or other substance abuse disorder is also present, with the reverse also applying.

Indeed, while it is more typical for anxiety disorders and alcohol or substance abuse disorders to be experienced independently, a vicious cycle can arise if they occur at the same time. One disorder’s symptoms can contribute to the worsening of the other, with an anxiety disorder possibly causing a person to self-medicate or attempt to alleviate anxiety symptoms through the use of alcohol or other substances.

Anxiety disorders that can coincide with alcohol or substance abuse problems include society anxiety disorder, people with this disorder often claiming that alcohol helps to reduce their social anxiety, despite it often making matters worse. Society anxiety disorder is therefore often followed by an alcohol abuse disorder.

It is also common for post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) to occur alongside substance abuse, due to the attempts of PTSD sufferers to ease their anxiety through alcohol or drug use. There is also the risk of a substance abuse relapse as a result of the intrusive thoughts and sleep disturbance symptoms of PTSD, leading to PTSD and substance abuse often being treated together.

Similarly, panic attacks can be caused by alcohol or drugs, and panic disorder is a risk factor for a relapse among those with problems with substance abuse. Panic disorder symptoms tend to occur at the same time, or shortly after the onset of alcohol abuse.

There are many options for the appropriate treatment of those with both substance abuse and anxiety disorder, the treatment of both together helping to decrease the chance of relapse. Medications with low abuse potential are prescribed by doctors, these being considered safe if a relapse does occur.

For people with an anxiety disorder alongside problems with substance abuse, therapy can also be invaluable. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is one especially well-established and effective treatment that helps with the identification, understanding and modification of thinking and behavior patterns.

A support group is another potentially highly effective type of treatment, proven to deliver results for many of those in need of substance abuse intervention in Miami like that offered by Family Recovery Specialists.

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