If you suffer from addiction, you might also suffer from one or more mental health issues. To with cope with mental health problems, it can be tempting to self-medicate using substances. Unfortunately, society still has a long way to go in breaking down barriers and stigmas related to mental health issues.
This may be one of the reasons that it can be so tempting to take it into your own hands to self-medicate, instead of seeking professional help. Feeling lost and alone while trying to tackle the issues you struggle with can result in poor decision-making, and ultimately harm you in the long run.
Dangers of Self-Medication
The internet provides the freedom to endlessly search for reasons as to why you may feel a certain way. This can be both helpful and detrimental to your mental and physical health. No one knows how you are feeling better than you do, but some professionals can take exactly what you are feeling and translate it properly into a correct diagnosis. It can be dangerous to self-diagnose because you can never be sure if you are correct. An incorrect diagnosis can lead to incorrect medication, incorrect doses of medication, ignoring the correct diagnoses, and not receiving accurate help.
Consuming the wrong medication or wrong dose of medication can lead to severe mental and physical health problems. Self-diagnosing and self-medicating is a dangerous practice that can result in much more harm than good.
Trusting Our Healthcare System
The truth is, not everyone always receives equal treatment in America’s current healthcare system. Marginalized communities may fear going to the doctor based on the discrimination they have experienced in the past. This is understandable, valid, and a reason why you may struggle with substance use for a prolonged period.
Still, many healthcare providers understand the need for special attention to these groups who suffer from substance use at a higher rate and are passionate about providing them care. There are professionals dedicated to helping anyone in need, and there are resources available to help you find the right fit for you.
An incorrect self-diagnosis can create havoc in your life. If you believe that you are suffering from one mental health issue and address it with the wrong medication, you will set back your recovery. It can also adversely affect the way you cope with your illness by making it worse or by creating additional health and mental health problems.
If you believe that you are suffering from depression and self-medicate with a substance that not only is not right for depression, but harmful to your overall health, you can be causing intense harm to your body. This harm can affect the way you act towards yourself and others. The end result will worsen your health, and create more problems in your personal and work relationships.
Asking For Help
Realizing that your struggle with substance use and mental health has become too much can be difficult to accept. Once you do, you should feel proud of yourself for being self-aware and give yourself patience for the next steps. If you are not sure what to do next, that is okay. You can reach out to a loved one and ask for help in finding the correct treatment.
Not being able to seek treatment without help is common and the support can help reassure you that you are making the right decision. After reaching out for healing, you can communicate how you feel, what you think is best going forward, and what you are struggling with. From there a professional can make the final decision and guide you to what comes next.
Being Vulnerable With Yourself and Others
You might turn to self-diagnosing and self-medicating because you are not sure how to be open and vulnerable with yourself or others. When you can overcome these mental blocks you can open yourself up to things like finding the right type of treatment that works for you, as well as the correct medication if needed. When you receive treatment for your struggle with substance use and addiction, you can also start to heal your mind and body. The road to recovery may feel daunting, but your hard work can pay off and help you to live your best life.
You have the potential to achieve great things, but you will also have different hurdles to overcome. When you can recognize what is standing in your way, you can figure out how to get past it and move on to better things.
It can be easy to suffer alone with substance use and addiction, especially if you don’t know anyone else who shares your struggle. It can be dangerous to self-diagnose and self-medicate, and you should always seek the help of a professional and their opinion. If you incorrectly self-diagnose, it can lead to incorrectly self-medicating. This can cause severe mental and physical health problems for you, both in the present and down the road as you get older. It may seem like the easy route is to try and handle everything on your own, but it is worthwhile to reach out to a loved one and ask for help and support. It’s okay to be vulnerable and share our struggles with those around you. If you have been struggling to cope with substance abuse on your own, reach out to Lighthouse Recovery Texas today at (214) 396-0259.