Fix A Flat – Fix A Mood Beer
For Temporary Use Only
I was working with my new therapist a few weeks back when we both made jokes about fix-a-flat. The end joke was the cartoon above on how to fix-a-mood!
While many people often use alcohol and/or other illegal mood-altering drugs to self-medicate, I want to make it CLEAR that I “personally” don’t condone this type of temporary solution. Now, I’m not a prude who says to NEVER self-medicate, since I’ve done it myself in the past and it may seem like an “easy” solution, but it really doesn’t solve anything and can make more problems in the long haul!
From the Depression Bipolar Support Alliance’s free Dual Diagnosis and Recovery(PDF) brochure:
What is self-medication?
Sometimes people may use alcohol or drugs to help cover up or mask symptoms of a mood disorder. For example, if a person’s mind is racing because of mania, a drink of alcohol may slow it down. If a person has intense sadness or hopelessness because of depression, a drug may help him or her feel happy or hopeful for a period of time. This “self-medication” may appear to help, but it actually makes things worse. After the temporary effects of the alcohol or drugs wear off, a person’s symptoms are often worse than ever. Self-medication can cause a person’s mood disorder to stay undiagnosed for a long time.
Why is it important to stay clean and sober when getting treatment?
Mixing alcohol or drugs with medication can have serious and dangerous effects. Many medications, including over-the-counter medications, interact with alcohol or drugs in harmful ways. It is also unlikely that you will benefit from talk therapy if you are under the influence.
Why is it important to treat both the mood disorder and the alcohol/drug use? When neither illness is treated, one illness can make the other worse. When only one illness is treated, treatment is less likely to be effective. When both illnesses are treated, the chances for a full and lasting recovery are greatly improved, and it is easier to return to a full and productive life.