An Expert Summary on co-occurring alcohol use disorder and depression from the University at Buffalo Research Institute on Addictions states that most addiction treatment programs remain unequipped to address the most common co-occurring condition. The report adds that the medications commonly used to treat alcohol dependence and to treat depression have not been shown to be effective in addressing the other condition.
Alcohol and Depression is the second installment in a three-part series of summaries from the institute, with the first having examined substance abuse and mental illness more broadly. The document states that according to the most recent National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions, people with an alcohol use disorder are 3.7 times more likely to experience a major depressive disorder than individuals without an alcohol use disorder.
The summary does state that collaboration between addiction treatment professionals and the medical community is increasing. It adds that cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and Motivational Interviewing “have shown strong effectiveness in dealing with dual diagnosis of alcohol and depressive disorders.”