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Can I drink alcohol or use recreational drugs when I have depression?

72 Answers
Last Updated: 11/16/2021 at 9:02pm
1 Tip to Feel Better
Moderated by

Johanna Liasides, MSc


I work with youth and young adults to help them improve depressive symptoms and self-esteem as well as effectively address family, relationship and peer conflicts.

Top Rated Answers
September 16th, 2014 3:05pm
You shouldn't. Alcohol is a depressant. A depressant mixed with more depression is a recipe for disaster. Recreational drugs may numb the pain for a bit, but they can also have adverse reactions and do more harm than good. It's never good to depend on a substance to feel better.
September 18th, 2014 9:41am
No. You should never drink it.Many people think that it helps but the truth is it doesn't. It has a adverse effect on your health. Whenever you are depressed just go for a walk morning or evening walk. You can talk to someone. Talking really helps.
September 13th, 2014 10:16pm
The best way to deal with depression is to confront it directly. The depression will only be temporarily relieved through the use of alcohol or recreational drugs. The only way to stop the pain is to beat the pain. Guided meditation or consulting with a professional or someone you love will definitely help you fight your depression and win against all odds. You are stronger than your depression. Do not let it dictate your life cause you are an amazing person who can not be defeated that easily, no matter how hopeless things may seem.
October 2nd, 2014 10:56am
you could, but that never is an answer to anything. You might think that it is good, that it is helping you know, but on the long run it is just going to deprive you of all the joy life can offer.
November 3rd, 2014 11:59am
Of course you can. There is no one in the world that can stop you from doing what you want or feel you need to do, especially when it comes to depression. However, depression and drugs, whether it is alcohol or other substances, could end up making your life more difficult. Make sure any decision you make is informed. If you are taking medical or alternative treatments for depression, make sure you tell your doctor that you are using a drug - it could have bad side effects, even be fatal.
November 4th, 2014 6:04pm
I would recommend staying far away from alcohol or recreational drug use while you're feeling depressed. These things may temporarily make you feel better, but they are not a solution and, in fact, they might make the original problem even worse!
November 7th, 2014 4:15am
Well, yeah, of course you can. I wouldn't recommend alcohol - in my case it made me extremely violent combined with anti-depressants, and I wasn't violent to other people, but myself. Don't really want to advertise drugs, but what really helped me was acid. I know, weird right. It opened some kind of other world and the way of thinking changed to more positive.
November 9th, 2014 10:56pm
You can drink alcohol however I would recommend cutting it out as it acts as a depressant and will make you feel worse in the long run. Recreational drugs are never a good idea, particularly for anyone with mental health conditions so I would say it is best to avoid these completely.
November 13th, 2014 1:55am
Yes, you can, but remember it is only a temporary solution to a long-term problem. Therapy and medical drugs are the roads to recovery.
April 17th, 2015 9:10pm
No, even though it seems to be the only way out to run away from every sad and bad things on life, it won't make things better.
May 10th, 2016 10:15pm
I wouldn't advise it because alcohol is a depressant and will exasperate the situation you are in. Similarly drugs puts you in a false sense of happiness and so you dip when they wear off
June 12th, 2017 1:18am
Physically, you can, but it it`s not recommended. Alcohol is a depressant, and it`s easier to become addicted to it if you are feeling depressed, and it`s the same for drugs. There are many more healthier ways of coping with depression and getting support for yourself. Stay strong, keep fighting!
September 25th, 2018 11:00am
Doing anything that would make you forget about your state might become an addiction during depression. So it's best to avoid those things. Because once it becomes an addiction, it will only lead to a vicious cycle and you would escape from the reality using that addiction. It can get very dangerous. You should use music instead of all those things. It might help you forget even if fir a little bit and it is perfectly healthy. It would also help you to keep your memory controlled as it is known to have some kind of a memory loss during depression. But doing anything that you liked during depression excessively might become an addiction. So as long as you successfully stay in the real world and don't forget your problems, it's fine if you're using some safe means to escape from the reality. Like watching movies, playing games, reading, music etc. Doing things that you like, which are not hazardous for you.
November 16th, 2021 9:02pm
It is recommended to AVOID alcohol and drugs when you are in any stage of depression. The logic is that alcohol and drugs will give you euphoria and can be relaxing for some time but that feeling is only temporary and does not actually deal with the main issue at hand, your depression. The best course of action would be to find healthy alternatives you might like such as a playing a sport, reading books, socializing with others whenever you feel like you want to use any harmful substances. It is important to get help with a certified mental health professional to get cognitive behavior therapy / psychotherapy and possibly medication. Therapy will be long, tedious, and emotionally painful but it is a much better approach than drinking and using drugs to cover up your depression.
September 14th, 2014 6:39am
No. It will only make you worse. Alcohol and drugs are something that are addictive. You won't be able to get out of it and it will make you feel much worse!
September 25th, 2014 8:14pm
Alcohol is a depressant so I would always try to avoid excess when you have depression, especially if you're currently on medication. If you do drink or use recreational drugs and have any adverse feelings or side effects please make sure you are not alone and can access help if you need it. Please be aware that use of drugs or drinking can easily become a coping mechanism during depression and again seek help if it becomes a problem.
September 28th, 2014 1:07am
It would not be in your best interest to do so. People often use them as a way to cope, but in fact, it can make your depression worse by making you feel like you'll never feel as good while you're sober because of the temporary, fleeting high that is produced when a person drinks or uses drugs. Overall, it can seriously complicate your depression in the long-term, leading to dependence, causing alcoholism and drug abuse problems. The best is to find alternative methods to cope, such as getting involved in activities you enjoy, and seeking help by talking to someone.
September 29th, 2014 5:32pm
It wouldn't benefit you, I think. If you are on any medication the answer is that you can't. If you are not the you technically can but you probably should find another way to deal with the emotions and feelings that cause you to be depressed. You should ask your doctor to make sure!
September 30th, 2014 2:18am
If you use these while you are in a weak state, (depression) there is a much higher chance of getting addicted, and worse getting found out by someone you love.
October 12th, 2014 10:14pm
No you can not. Doing so will only help you for a little while. Eventually you will feel bad again and things will only get worse.
October 18th, 2014 12:54pm
No I think you can not. Because when you have depression you should definitely see a professional. Drugs are really bad.
October 24th, 2014 11:17pm
Although the use of alcohol and recreational drugs may seem appealing to "numb" depression or take your mind off things, in the long run it will have more of a negative effect and may make things worse.
October 25th, 2014 2:03am
Its not a good idea to do so as it could worsen your state of mood. Also if you are taking medication for depression it is really a no no.
October 30th, 2014 8:28pm
You shouldn't. While the high can be wonderful, drugs and alcohol essentially fry your dopamine (pleasure) receptors, making the crash afterwards worse than the depression was to begin with, and forcing you to use more every time you want to get high. It becomes a vicious cycle.
November 3rd, 2014 8:18am
Using alcohol or drugs to mask depression can often lead to addiction, but I believe if the substanes are consumed purely on a recreational basis there is no harm.
November 3rd, 2014 4:22pm
Drinking Alcohol and recreational drug is not the solution to deal with depression. They will badly affect your health and will disturb you mentally as they have many side effects. instead , Spend time someone you love, with friends, family and giving time to yourself to figure out what make you depressed and how to deal with it. Start with simple steps to avoid depression and have a cheerfull life ahead.
November 4th, 2014 8:58am
It's a VERY bad idea. Alcohol is definitively a depressant, which of course, does not mix with depression. Any drugs that AREN'T depressants-- but "Uppers"-- will eventually have a "comedown," or "crash." Drugs and alcohol are statistically shown to significantly increase the effects of depression, and the suicide rate for depressed people who are under the influence of alcohol and drugs is drastically higher than those who are not.
November 4th, 2014 11:31pm
I wouldn't advise drinking alcohol as it's actually a depressant in itself and can add to your depression, I wouldn't ever recommend taking recreational drugs as the effects are unpredictable and dangerous.
November 5th, 2014 6:12am
I don't think using recereational drugs or drinking can help when you are depressed. It makes it worse.
November 6th, 2014 10:13am
Alcohol can only make you forget and feel light for a while. I prefer to talk to someone. And do things I love the most, be busy and as much as possible stay away from the things depressing you.