Menu Close

Rehab Blog

Providing Trusted, Evidence-Based
Treatment for Three Decades and Counting

If you or a loved one is experiencing addiction, we’re here to help.

Suicide A Real Risk With Drug Addiction

Depression and drug use, suicide and addiction. These issues are closely related. They are dark consequences of one another and challenge efforts to rediscover health and joy in life. However a challenge is not a permanent block. Suicide is a real risk, but recovery is also a real possibility.

Is Suicide Common?

Woman contemplating suicideSuicide is one of the leading causes of death in the United States. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration[1] (SAMHSA) shares, “Nearly 40,000 people in the United States die from suicide annually, or 1 person every 13 minutes…More people die by suicide than from automobile accidents.” SAMHSA explains that nearly 25 times more people than this attempt suicide each year. This makes for a staggering number of unhappy or desperate individuals.

Help and hope are available, but people have to speak up and reach out to take advantage of available resources. This can be incredibly difficult to do when struggling with depressive or suicidal thoughts. Suicide is a real risk for any person facing mental health concerns or life challenges. Professional treatment and personal support can prevent suicide. They can restore joy and quality of life. Addiction rehab, therapy, and mental health treatment reduce the risk of suicide.

Is Drug Use Dangerous?

Drug use puts lives at risk in many ways. The Surgeon General[2] explains that substance use can result in the following:

  • Motor vehicle crashes
  • Intimate partner and sexual violence
  • Child abuse and neglect
  • Suicide attempts and fatalities
  • Overdose deaths
  • Various forms of cancer
  • Heart and liver diseases

Drug use has serious effects. Some of these are fatal or have a long-term impact on health. Suicide is one of many real and potential consequences of addiction. Luckily consequences can be avoided through recovery. The earlier someone gets or seeks treatment, the safer he or she remains. Many consequences can be avoided, and others can be reversed. Mental and physical healing comes through comprehensive, professional attention.

Is Suicide Related to Drug Use?

Suicide and addiction are related because substance use and mental health are related. Addiction is considered a mental health issue. It also frequently overlaps with other mental health concerns. The National Institute on Drug Abuse[3] shares, “Persons diagnosed with mood or anxiety disorders are about twice as likely to suffer also from a drug use disorder (abuse or dependence)…Similarly, persons diagnosed with drug disorders are roughly twice as likely to suffer also from mood and anxiety disorders.”

Anyone can feel overwhelmed, depressed and suicidal. The risk of these thoughts and related actions increases with drug use. If these feelings already exist, individuals may attempt to self-medicate or escape through drug use. This ultimately worsens feelings of depression and increases suicide risk, but it can seem like an appealing or quick solution when thoughts or life seem overwhelming.

Suicide risk is tied to addiction and mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder and more. Since each increases the risk of suicide on its own, when issues occur simultaneously, suicide risk multiplies. SAMHSA shares, “The most critical risk factors for suicide are prior suicide attempts, mood disorders (such as depression), alcohol and drug use, and access to lethal means. In 2008, alcohol was a factor in approximately one-third of suicides reported in 16 states…In 2011, there was a 51% increase in drug-related suicide attempt visits to hospital emergency departments.” Drug addiction makes suicide a real risk. It also provides means and methods for suicide attempts or accidents. Treatment restricts access to drugs. It gives individuals the support and tools they need to change thought patterns and behaviors. Programs like those at Michael’s House address any and all co-occurring mental and physical health concerns. This ensures patients leave happy, healthy, and ready to pursue and enjoy a drug-free life. If you’d like to speak to someone about seeking treatment for addiction and mental health concerns, give us a call at 760.548.4032.

[1] “Suicide Prevention.” Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. 29 Oct 2015. Web. 19 Mar 2017.

[2] The Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health. Nov 2016. Web. 19 Mar 2017.

[3] “Comorbidity: Addiction and Other Mental Illnesses.” National Institute on Drug Abuse. Sep 2010. Web. 19 Mar 2017.