In a world where we’re told we can’t have too much, it’s not surprising we can still be overwhelmed by the daily grind.
It’s a feeling many feel like they need to control, or even control themselves.
And that’s the challenge for those living with depression and addictions: it’s easy to look at the symptoms and think they’re all in the head.
But in fact they’re often more complex than that.
Symptoms of depression include: feeling worthless or unworthy, not being able to do things that you want to do, and feeling sad, anxious or irritable.
Addictions include things like binge drinking, sex addiction, gambling, and drug use.
The symptoms of addictions can be so severe that many can be considered terminal.
This can make people feel suicidal.
And while depression can often be managed, the disease can become more difficult to diagnose, or treat, as you age.
To help us get to know your mental health, we spoke to mental health experts, counsellors, psychiatrists and researchers to find out more about the challenges of living with addictions.
The key to overcoming addictionsThe most important thing is to stay positive and have confidence in your life, said Dr Richard Fergusson, the executive director of the National Centre for Addiction and Mental Health in Sydney, Australia.
He also said there is a huge difference between being ‘overwhelmed’ by life and ‘overcompensating’ with addiction.
“You have to be willing to admit that it’s going to take some time to get over,” he said.
Dr Ferguson says you can’t take drugs for more than two weeks, but says that’s not to say you should avoid them altogether.
“You can’t completely stop using drugs, you can only do the things that help you to stay on the drugs,” he explained.
“And when you’re trying to make a change, you need to be ready to change, and not be complacent about it.”
If you or someone you know is struggling with addicitis, call Lifeline on 13 11 14.