Physical and mental health are interrelated. There is a link between smoking and drinking with mental health disorders. By overcoming alcohol and drug addiction, including psychological addiction to marijuana, you can achieve better mental health. Smoking any form of tobacco has an affect, not only on the lungs and body, but also on the mind.
Alcohol abuse can lead to symptoms of bipolar disorder. The larger percentage, up to 60%, of those with bipolar disorder, abuse or have abused alcohol. Alcohol is a depressant. On the one hand, it offers a temporary relief from anxieties. On the other hand, overuse can contribute to more anxiety and depression.
Alcohol is used, at times, to self-medicate, that is, to relieve anxiety and/or depression. Its use can be something of a vicious cycle in terms of stress, anxiety, depression and dependence.
The course of wisdom for the majority of those who have any type of mental health disorder, including depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety or anxiety disorders, any diagnosable mental health disorder, is to avoid alcohol completely...for life, not only temporarily.
Quiting smoking and use of alcohol can help contribute to a healthier lifestyle, which has physical and mental health benefits.
Marijuana Use Among Teens and Adults May Contribute to Mental Health Disorders
or to Symptoms Usually Associated with Mental Health Disorders
Use of "soft" drugs, such as marijuana
can contribute to problems with depression, anxiety, paranoia, and might even contribute to long-term mental health issues after cessation. 40% of Americans have used marijuana at least once. Marijuana use is common among high school students and even middle school teens. Parents and teachers are often unaware and teenagers
may experiment with marijuana
or other drugs unbeknownst to their parents. Teachers, guidance counselors and child study teams may be unaware of that the teenager is using marijuana
Frequent or prolonged use of marijuana can lead and contribute to depression
in some teens and even children, and contribute to other mental health disorders as well. Sometimes use of recreational drugs in the past might contribute to mental health difficulties later in life.
Professional Help for Drug and Alcohol Abuse
Other forms of drug abuse are also interrelated with mental health disorders. Professional help such as a drug and alcohol rehab
can be of help to many in staying off of drugs and alcohol. However, you can't be content with only getting professional help. You have to be determined to make lifestyle changes, which might involve acquiring a new set of friends. Those who succeed are those who are determined, who don't give up, and who prepare themselves for a new life out of rehab. See Making a Success of Drug and Alcohol Rehab
Whether or not you go into rehab, the support of a medical doctor or a psychologist
can be of value. Cognitive behavioral therapy
might help. This site does not recommend hypnotism in mental health efforts. It is of more benefit to learn to develop your own self-will and self-control, than to become reliant on the will of others.
If you struggle with drugs or alcohol, try to avoid using pain killers, sleeping medications, amphetamines or stimulants, or other narcotic-life drugs. These can contribute to the psychology of and the physical necessity of dependence on substances, which is what you are trying to break free from.
Instead, develop coping strategies and a network of support from others in your efforts to conquer substance abuse and stabilize mentally, if that is a necessity. Some benefit from professional treatment or from residency at an alcohol treatment center
(off-site link from sponsor). Even so, you need to take your life into your own hands and make whatever changes you need to for recovery.
For those with Mental Health Disorders, Doing Without Alcohol is the Best Plan
For most adults, drinking a moderate amount of alcohol is not harmful. However, for a substantial percentage of the population, doing without alcohol completely, is the best course. Some have an "addictive personality," may be compulsive with their alcohol use or abuse, or find themselves depending on alcohol for relief from stress, in order to have a good time or in order to socialize. A psychological (in addition to a physical) dependence can result.
For those with mental health difficulties or disorders, doing without alcohol completely is both the course of wisdom and may be a necessity for recovery.
Strong encouragement from one's doctor
for a client/patient to quit smoking
is of value. Additionally, creating smoke-free psychiatric facilities, can be of help to those struggling to recover from mental illness
Exercise, a close watch on your choices in entertainment (avoiding bars or places where alcohol and smoking are common), prayer and positive spiritual activities
have proven to be of help in quiting smoking and alcohol abuse. Reading the Bible
daily can give added support and be strengthening.
There is a correlation between alcohol (and drug) abuse with bipolar disorder. Some studies suggest that over 60% of those who suffer with bipolar disorder also struggle with some form of substance abuse.
References and Resources for Substance Abuse and Mental Health
1. Burgess, Wes, M.D., Ph.D., (2006). The Bipolar Handbook. London: Penguin.
2. Facts on Bipolar Drug Treatment
, (November 13, 2010). Association for Natural Psychology
3. Why Quit Smoking?
How You can Quit Smoking
. (2000, March 22). Awake
Pages Related to Substance Abuse and Mental Health
Marijuana and School
, Grades, Addiction, Pregnancy
Selecting the Right
Drug and Alcohol Rehab
Drug and Alcohol
and Self Help
in substance abuse treatment (especially for adolescents).