Mental health professionals and researchers are well aware that depression and substance problems often appear together and cause worse problems for the individual than when they appear on their own. Researchers have long been trying to explain the connection between depression and stress in women who are affected by substance abuse problems. These researchers concluded that low-stress tolerance is an important contributor to the severity of substance abuse and addiction in depressed women. Read on to learn more about stress management for women and how Lucida Treatment Center can help. Depression and Substance Problems Experts often associate depression with the excessive or abusive intake of a range of mind-altering substances. These substances include: \tAlcohol \tOpioid drugs \tOpioid medications \tCocaine \tAmphetamine \tMethamphetamine \tSolvents and other makeshift inhalants \tMarijuana and other forms of cannabis Additionally, alcohol withdrawal is also associated with increased depression risks. The use of sedative-hypnotic medications (including tranquilizers) can worsen an existing case of major depression or any other form of depressive illness. How Co-Occurring Conditions Increase Impact Depression and substance use disorder are co-occurring disorders. This means that the presence of depression alters the course of substance use disorder (or vice versa). As a result, these co-occurring disorders produce worse outcomes than would otherwise typically occur. There are many symptoms of individuals who suffer from depression as well as substance abuse problems. These heightened symptoms include: \tA higher number of depression symptoms \tMore intense depression symptoms \tDepression that recurs with unusual frequency Additionally, specific aspects of an ongoing pattern of substance use that may add to depression symptoms include: \tSocial damage associated with being identified as a substance abuser or addict \tThe isolation that often accompanies a damaged social reputation \tA chronic lack of adequate financial resources Stress Management For Woman Stress tolerance is a term that professionals use to describe any given person\u2019s ability to withstand the mental\/emotional impact of everyday or extraordinary stress without experiencing significant adverse effects. Some people have a fairly well-developed ability to withstand or tolerate stress, while others do not. However, stress tolerance is not a fixed or permanent characteristic. You can learn to increase your mental or emotional durability so you can better deal with stress. Specific factors that are associated with a relatively high level of stress tolerance include the ability to: \tAccess a strong social support network \tView problems in positive terms \tFocus on long-term outcomes rather than short-term setbacks \tAssess and monitor your current emotional state \tAssess and monitor your body\u2019s reactions to stress \tSet effective and reasonable priorities Depression And Stress Impact on Women Researchers have assessed the impact that gender has on the overlapping effects of depression and stress tolerance. Researchers concluded that, when it comes to the severity of substance abuse and addiction, there is a triangular relationship between gender, stress tolerance, and depression. Specifically, for women, they concluded that increased symptoms of depression are linked to more serious forms of substance problems in individuals who have relatively low-stress durability. Furthermore, experts have defined stress tolerance (distress tolerance) as the ability to continue to pursue goals and plans even when setbacks lead to significant, negative changes in an individual's normal mood. This definition fits well with more generalized notions of the ability to successfully endure stress. Additionally, men who enrolled in the study did not experience the same connection between substance problem severity, depression symptoms, and low-stress tolerance. This may be an important finding since, compared to American men, American women have a roughly 70 percent higher lifetime rate of exposure to depression. Researchers believe that women who are in treatment for substance problems may benefit from gender-specific approaches to improving stress tolerance. How Lucida Treatment Center Can Help To learn more about the relationship between stress management, depression, and substance abuse, contact our Lantana, FL Alcohol Treatment Center at . Our staff and professionals are here to help so you can overcome your addiction and mental illness. We are here for you so you can live without extreme stress, depression, and substance use.