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

71 Answers
Last Updated: 06/22/2020 at 3:36pm
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
Moderated by

Jannise McKamey-Bruell, LAPC


I am a nonjudgmental counselor that employs transparency, trust, honesty and integrity in her practice and in the therapeutic relationship.

Top Rated Answers
November 11th, 2014 6:55pm
Being under the influence while depressed can worsen your depression and heighten your emotions. You could be very happy then go into a pit of self loathing. It doesn't numb your emotions for that long.
November 12th, 2014 7:38pm
The legal recreational drugs if prescribed by your psychiatrist you are allowed to take them. But taking alcohol worsens your depression even if it seems to be a relief at that time.
November 13th, 2014 1:53pm
If you are on medication its better not too. Reminding that alcohol is a depressant in itself, on the drug aspect on things depending on what is being used there is a saying what goes up must come down which could generally make you feel worse for a long period of time.
November 13th, 2014 3:48pm
Obviously, you are able to use alcohol or drugs when depressed. But, it is not the solution. Your choices are your choices and although you may not believe it sometimes, you have complete control over what you do to help achieve happiness within yourself, sober. I had personal experience with smoking marijuana when I got down. I've been sober for two months, and the unrealistic idea that I had before that I could never be happy completely changed while I wasn't using the drug. Drugs are not the solution although it may seem as if they are.
November 17th, 2014 12:09am
i think drugs are not good anyways but alcohol should be okay it it is proportion. al long as it doesn't take u too high and lets u fall down even deeper in the depression
November 17th, 2014 1:21am
No please don't do that! Alcohol will not help solve any of the problems you are having, it will only cause more.
March 19th, 2015 3:23pm
I don't think it is the best idea personally although you are the only person that knows you. Just remember that alcohol and drugs are addicting and using them under stress can cause many issues as can the addiction of self-harm. Drinking and doing drugs are just other forms of self harm that are not as direct. Be careful when drinking or using any other substance, if any at all, when you are upset.
April 4th, 2015 11:56pm
it will only make you keep thinking about bad stuff. go on and look for help. things can get better. dont give up yet!
May 1st, 2015 8:38pm
It is highly not recommended to drink alcohol or take drugs. Alcohol is a natural depressent so it won't help anyone that is depressed. Drugs is not recommended at all. I've had depression before, and I just avoided alcohol completely until I got out of it.
May 7th, 2015 10:50pm
Mixing alcohol or recreational (and even over the counter) drugs with depression is not a healthy mix. It would be better to talk to a friend or find a support group or a therapist, rather than trying to mix fire with oil.
May 8th, 2015 5:12pm
You can. Yet it is not recommended. I used to smoke Marijuana when depressed. It was an outlet yet a negative one. It took away my motivation and all I wanted was to sleep and eat.
May 9th, 2015 8:25am
You can, although using these things only numbs the pain for a mere moment. I wouldn't recommend, as being reliant on these things can get you into a hole that's even more difficult to get out of than depression alone. I found that beginning to use drugs recreationally made my depression deeper, and I never wanted to be sober. So Yes, you can use them, but no I would not recommend it. It solves nothing from what I experienced, just some short burst of bliss that was never worth it in the end.
July 6th, 2015 2:52am
I don't recommend it. What happens is you become dependent on the good feelings from those, rather than being able to feel great, yourself. It will become difficult to feel good when you're off the drugs or alcohol.
July 14th, 2015 4:44am
The answer will be no; you need to talk to somebody! Go to a physician and seek the help that you need. recreational drugs won't solve the problem; it's only a temporary relief... Solving the problem is what helps
July 20th, 2015 10:20pm
No. Using drugs and/ or alcohol at the moment seems like a great idea but actually it´s not. The consecuences this might bring are scary.
November 16th, 2015 11:19am
It's best you speak to a healthcare professional about whether you can use alcohol or recreational drugs when you have depression. From my own experience, using alcohol with depression made me feel a lot worse, so it was better for me to avoid it.
December 7th, 2015 9:59pm
Turns out, that while drinking alcohol and using drugs does provide temporary escape from depression, when the effect wears out you end up feeling worse than before. Using them is discouraged.
December 14th, 2015 6:11am
Its not recommended! drugs and alcohol tend to be depressants, which lower your mood and you level of functioning. With pre-existing depression, these substances with cause moods to drop even lower.
December 14th, 2015 12:19pm
You could drink alcohol but it won't solve any problems that you may have and I don't think drugs are a very good idea
December 22nd, 2015 11:28am
no, its only going to make you feel physically an mentally worse. even though it washes away feeling for a while and makes you feel numb, it does make you feel more depressed
February 16th, 2016 10:16pm
Alcohol itself is a depressant, so it is not advised to use anything that can alter the mental state, which is what drugs do.
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
May 30th, 2016 7:27pm
In general, drugs an alcohol worsen depression. Recreational drugs slow down the mind even more than it already is due to depression. Also, addiction could become an additional problem. Finding an activitiy that calms you and makes you feel good can have a similar effect and definitely is the better choice.
July 18th, 2016 8:52pm
I didnt used drugs, but i used alcohol. Alcohol can make you feel a little better for a while, if you use i socially. If you drink too much or alone, you posibly won't be in a better mood. And the side effects of alcohol... Are bad. I recommend to use it socially, and with moderation.
July 19th, 2016 8:30am
I would strongly advice against. Alcohol is a depressant in itself so is only going to make things worse in the long run. Imagine being stuck in a ditch with a broken leg. If you didn't have a broken leg you would be able to climb out. The broken leg represents your depression, with time as it heals you will be able to get out or others can help you out. Drinking and taking drugs, will only be making that ditch much deeper, making it more difficult for you to get out and making it more difficult for others to help you out.
October 10th, 2016 2:36am
No, drinking and taking drugs are never the answer. Once you come off that high, your problems all still lay at hand. It may make you forget, but it's always there. Accept it and try to move forward.
October 10th, 2016 5:20pm
You could but it does intensify the mood. So your not helping yourself in anyway by drinking or doing drugs.
October 24th, 2016 9:48am
I definitely would not recommend that. Alcohol is a depressant it'll only make you sink into a deeper hole of depression and recreational drugs can only create an illusion for you in the mean time. Once the high is over you'll be faced with reality again and your problems will still be there.
October 24th, 2016 9:58pm
You need to ask yourself a few questions first starting with why you're drinking, if it's purely recreational with friends/family and it's not to distract you from any problems you're facing at this moment in time or to temporarily mask the pain that your depression is causing you then it's okay. But then you have to ask yourself what your response is to drinking, some people react perfectly fine to drink/drugs where as others can get very emotional and can dwell on problems whilst they're drunk whether they're imaginary or real problems. If you respond fine to drink then I guess this is another reason for why you could drink. There's many more things to consider before drinking whilst depressed but one of them is your current mental state, you go through different stages of depression and if the one you're at before drinking is quite serious then you may want to reconsider despite anything above as you don't know how mixing alcohol and such a serious form of depression could affect you. Last of all though consult yourself before drinking. Not a depressed you that is telling you to gulp down a bottle of liquor, a level headed genuine version of yourself that deep down knows what to do in the situation and can make the right judgement.
October 27th, 2016 5:13pm
No, its not a good idea. it could lead to more depressing thoughts.