Credit card debt, depression and addiction can create a triad of destruction. Any one of these inter-related problems can cause or contribute to the other two, and the three together are often mutually reinforcing, Having these problems can create a continuous downward spiral.
How Debt, Depression and Addiction Reinforce One Another
Credit card debt can contribute to depression, which can then lead addiction as people seek relief. Inversely, depression may contribute to or be a result of addiction; also, addiction often leads to financial instability which may include credit card debt. Drug addicts have altered thought processes, impaired judgment, make poor choices and tend to put the needs of their addiction above all else. Addiction takes over the mind and compels addicts to attend to their cravings. When an addict needs drugs she will do whatever it takes to get them, regardless of the consequences. If the addict has access to a line of credit he or she will access it to buy drugs. Eventually the drugs run out but the debt is still there, which causes more depression and further desire to escape in drug use.
Cravings for the drug can be overwhelming, and if credit is still available it is likely to be used to buy more drugs. Incapacitated by addiction and depression, people may not see a way out of debt, or may not have the energy to reduce debt and get back on a solid financial footing.
Regardless of the causes of these problems, they result in cycle of increased debt, depression and addiction. The possible consequences of this are almost limitless. An addict may lose all of his assets and become encumbered with insurmountable debt, which may cause him to lose his home and be forced to live homeless. These problems can also create divorce and estrangement from children. In extreme cases an addict may be driven to suicide.
How to Treat Debt, Depression and Addiction
Regardless of which came first, depression and addiction often go together. Depression is a major risk factor for addiction, and is also a very common side effect of addiction. Addiction and depression are both debilitating and possibly dangerous conditions that require professional treatment.
Treating the behavioral elements of addiction without treating any underlying causes may alter addictive behavior for a while, but this leaves the recovering addict extremely susceptible to relapse, especially when events trigger depressive episodes.
Therapy that treats addiction along with co-occurring disorders is integrated treatment. This offers a much greater chance of a successful recovery from both the addiction and the depression.
Finally, once a person is sober and has been treated for depression, she is much more likely to put the situation in perspective. She will see a way out of debt and will have the energy to recover.
Help with Debt, Depression and Addiction
If you are suffering from debt, addiction and depression, call our 24 hour, toll-free helpline today for immediate help.