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Treatment for Depression and Addiction in North Carolina

Depression is extremely common in the United States. An estimated 14.8 million U.S. adults experience symptoms of a depressive episode each year and 17.3 million have been diagnosed with major depressive disorder.[1,2] Although depression is common, most people who experience them do not get the treatment they need to manage their symptoms.

Living with an untreated mental illness or addiction can be difficult, but experiencing both conditions simultaneously can be even more of a challenge. People who live with substance abuse or dependence may also experience the symptoms of depression. Without receiving comprehensive treatment for both conditions, long-term recovery is challenging.

Effective depression and addiction treatment is available to anyone who needs it. If you or a man you love lives with depression and addiction, contact the specialists at Next Step Recovery to explore your treatment options in North Carolina or find support during recovery.




What is Depression?

Depression is one of the most common forms of mental illness. About 350 million people worldwide suffer from a form of depression each year. In the United States, roughly 7% of the general population will go through a period of depression in a given year.[2] Only about half will receive professional treatment to manage their symptoms.

Depression is not simply feeling sad. It also differs from grief, which occurs after a loss or trauma. Depression is a mental illness that lingers for months or years. While symptoms of depression can sometimes begin after a specific event, it is often difficult to pinpoint the cause of depression.

Symptoms of depression include:[1]

  • Feeling low, sad, or empty inside
  • Low self-worth
  • Inability to experience joy or pleasure
  • Loss of interest in hobbies, relationships, or other activities
  • Fatigue
  • Poor concentration and memory
  • Thoughts of dying or preoccupation with death
  • Self-harm or suicidal thoughts and behaviors

Depression symptoms can range from mild to severe. Mental health experts believe that several factors may cause depression. These include:

  • Trauma
  • Genetics
  • Neurotransmitter imbalances
  • Brain structure

Depression can interfere with a person’s ability to function in their daily life and can worsen without treatment. Comprehensive treatment that includes emotional support, counseling, lifestyle changes, medications, and more can help people manage symptoms and live full, productive lives.

Signs of Addiction

Recognizing addiction early can help you get the treatment you need to overcome it. Knowing the signs of addiction may help you identify a problem sooner and allow you more time to get help. The sooner you get addiction treatment, the better the outcome will likely be.

Some signs of addiction include:

  • Needing to use more of a substance to get the same effect (tolerance)
  • Using a significant amount of time getting, using, and recovering from using the substance
  • Continuing to use the substance despite adverse consequences
  • Isolating from friends and family
  • Falling behind at work, in school, or your responsibilities at home
  • Getting sick or injured because of your substance use
  • Experiencing legal or financial trouble because of your substance use

Addiction is a serious and complex condition. Comprehensive treatment can help people manage their symptoms and learn the skills they need to avoid relapses in the future.

The Link Between Depression and Addiction

Research suggests a clear link between depression and addiction. About 20% of people who seek alcohol dependence treatment also meet the criteria for major depression.[3] Addiction and mental health specialists do not fully understand why this link exists, but many ideas suggest the cause for this connection.

One potential cause for the link between depression and addiction is that people with mental illness may have brain differences that make addiction more likely. People with depression may self-medicate, meaning they use drugs or alcohol to numb or cover up their symptoms. When someone uses addictive substances regularly, they are at increased risk of developing a dependence on drugs or alcohol over time.

Living with both depression and addiction is called having a dual diagnosis. Depression and addiction can improve if people get the comprehensive support and treatment they need. Because depression can affect addiction treatment and vice versa, treating both conditions simultaneously is critical.

What Happens in Treatment for Depression and Addiction in North Carolina?

Depression and addiction treatment helps people recover from both conditions. It provides access to the therapies and supports a person needs to recover from the physical, behavioral, and emotional aspects of addiction and depression.

Comprehensive addiction treatment programs in North Carolina use a combination of evidence-based and holistic therapies to help people recover from substance abuse. These include:

  • Individual therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Family therapy
  • Education
  • Skill-building practice
  • Medications – patients with depression may take antidepressant medications, often SSRIs, to reduce their symptoms
  • Holistic therapies–art, mindfulness practice, music therapy, yoga, acupuncture, and others may improve overall wellness

In a dual-diagnosis treatment program, specialized forms of therapy are used to help people manage their mental illness symptoms while receiving addiction treatment. Some common forms of therapy used in depression and addiction treatment include:

These types of therapy are effective at helping people learn about their depression and understand how to reduce their symptoms. These types of therapy support people’s work in addiction treatment and allow them to overcome their depression and addiction simultaneously.

Find Depression and Addiction Treatment in North Carolina

Next Step Recovery offers depression and addiction treatment in a safe, supportive environment in Asheville, North Carolina. Our programs focus on the unique needs of men who need treatment for depression and addiction. Our comprehensive approach to recovery means more individualized treatment options, ongoing support, and a focus on developing skills and habits that can support your sobriety for life.

Reach out to the specialists at Next Step Recovery today for information about our depression and addiction programs in Asheville.


  1. National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH): Major Depression, Retrieved April 2023 from
  2. Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA): Depression Statistics, Retrieved April 2023 from
  3. Psychiatric Times: Comorbid Depression and Alcohol Dependence, Retrieved April 2023 from

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