Can alcohol make you depressed?

When I drink I always end up feeling very depressed. I also wet the bed after a boozing session recently, which didn't help my mood. What's going on?

Alcohol can make some people feel depressed because it’s a type of drug called a depressant. (It slows down the way that the body works and is often linked with making people feel down.)

There’s a lot of research into why this happens. Most research says that people either feel depressed because of the alcohol, or they’re depressed already and the alcohol just makes things worse.

It sounds like your feelings of depression are linked to drinking, but it’s important for you to notice whether you feel down when you haven’t been drinking. If so, you might want to talk to someone about the way you’re feeling, such as a close friend or relative. If you feel uncomfortable with this there are charities that offer a free confidential helpline, such Mind on 0300 123 3393, or SANE on 0845 767 8000.

It’s not unusual for people to wet the bed when they’ve been drinking. This is because alcohol makes your bladder empty itself more often. Combined with alcohol’s depressive effect, this means that you might be sleeping more deeply than you would otherwise. As a result, you’re less likely to wake up when you need the loo.

Of course, the best way for you to avoid all of this is not to drink. It may be a difficult decision, but you might find that you feel happier and healthier. You could always ask your friends to support you in your decision not to drink and you may be surprised to find that some of them would like to cut down or stop too. If you would like advice on ways to avoid drinking, contact Drinkline on 0300 123 1110.

Answered by Addaction on 05-Jun-2014

Next Steps

  • Chat about this subject on our Discussion Boards.
  • Need help but confused where to go locally? Download our StepFinder iPhone app to find local support services quickly.