Depressed about debt

SAMHSA’s National Helpline | SAMHSA

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  • SAMHSA’s National Helpline is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service (in English and Spanish) for individuals and families facing mental and/or substance use disorders.

    Also visit the online treatment locator.

SAMHSA’s National Helpline, 1-800-662-HELP (4357) (also known as the Treatment Referral Routing Service), or TTY: 1-800-487-4889 is a confidential, free, 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year, information service, in English and Spanish, for individuals and family members facing mental and/or substance use disorders. This service provides referrals to local treatment facilities, support groups, and community-based organizations.

Also visit the online treatment locator, or send your zip code via text message: 435748 (HELP4U) to find help near you. Read more about the HELP4U text messaging service.

The service is open 24/7, 365 days a year.

English and Spanish are available if you select the option to speak with a national representative. Currently, the 435748 (HELP4U) text messaging service is only available in English.

In 2020, the Helpline received 833,598 calls. This is a 27 percent increase from 2019, when the Helpline received a total of 656,953 calls for the year.

The referral service is free of charge. If you have no insurance or are underinsured, we will refer you to your state office, which is responsible for state-funded treatment programs. In addition, we can often refer you to facilities that charge on a sliding fee scale or accept Medicare or Medicaid. If you have health insurance, you are encouraged to contact your insurer for a list of participating health care providers and facilities.

The service is confidential. We will not ask you for any personal information. We may ask for your zip code or other pertinent geographic information in order to track calls being routed to other offices or to accurately identify the local resources appropriate to your needs.

No, we do not provide counseling. Trained information specialists answer calls, transfer callers to state services or other appropriate intake centers in their states, and connect them with local assistance and support.

  • Suggested Resources

    What Is Substance Abuse Treatment? A Booklet for Families
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    It's Not Your Fault (NACoA) (PDF | 12 KB)
    Assures teens with parents who abuse alcohol or drugs that, "It's not your fault!" and that they are not alone. Encourages teens to seek emotional support from other adults, school counselors, and youth support groups such as Alateen, and provides a resource list.

    After an Attempt: A Guide for Taking Care of Your Family Member After Treatment in the Emergency Department
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    Explores the role of family therapy in recovery from mental illness or substance abuse. Explains how family therapy sessions are run and who conducts them, describes a typical session, and provides information on its effectiveness in recovery.

    For additional resources, please visit the SAMHSA Store.

Last Updated: 08/30/2022

Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drugs

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Misusing alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs can have both immediate and long-term health effects.

The misuse and abuse of alcohol, tobacco, illicit drugs, and prescription medications affect the health and well-being of millions of Americans. NSDUH estimates allow researchers, clinicians, policymakers, and the general public to better understand and improve the nation’s behavioral health. These reports and detailed tables present estimates from the 2021 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH).



  • Among the 133.1 million current alcohol users aged 12 or older in 2021, 60.0 million people (or 45.1%) were past month binge drinkers. The percentage of people who were past month binge drinkers was highest among young adults aged 18 to 25 (29.2% or 9.8 million people), followed by adults aged 26 or older (22.4% or 49.3 million people), then by adolescents aged 12 to 17 (3.8% or 995,000 people). (2021 NSDUH)
  • Among people aged 12 to 20 in 2021, 15.1% (or 5.9 million people) were past month alcohol users. Estimates of binge alcohol use and heavy alcohol use in the past month among underage people were 8.3% (or 3.2 million people) and 1.6% (or 613,000 people), respectively. (2021 NSDUH)
  • In 2020, 50.0% of people aged 12 or older (or 138.5 million people) used alcohol in the past month (i.e., current alcohol users) (2020 NSDUH)
  • Among the 138.5 million people who were current alcohol users, 61.6 million people (or 44.4%) were classified as binge drinkers and 17.7 million people (28.8% of current binge drinkers and 12.8% of current alcohol users) were classified as heavy drinkers (2020 NSDUH)
  • The percentage of people who were past month binge alcohol users was highest among young adults aged 18 to 25 (31. 4%) compared with 22.9% of adults aged 26 or older and 4.1% of adolescents aged 12 to 17 (2020 NSDUH)
  • Excessive alcohol use can increase a person’s risk of stroke, liver cirrhosis, alcoholic hepatitis, cancer, and other serious health conditions
  • Excessive alcohol use can also lead to risk-taking behavior, including driving while impaired. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 29 people in the United States die in motor vehicle crashes that involve an alcohol-impaired driver daily


  • STOP Underage Drinking interagency portal - Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Prevention of Underage Drinking
  • Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Prevention of Underage Drinking
  • Talk. They Hear You.
  • Underage Drinking: Myths vs. Facts
  • Talking with your College-Bound Young Adult About Alcohol

Relevant links:

  • National Association of State Alcohol and Drug Abuse Directors
  • Department of Transportation Office of Drug & Alcohol Policy & Compliance
  • Alcohol Policy Information Systems Database (APIS)
  • National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism



  • In 2020, 20. 7% of people aged 12 or older (or 57.3 million people) used nicotine products (i.e., used tobacco products or vaped nicotine) in the past month (2020 NSDUH)
  • Among past month users of nicotine products, nearly two thirds of adolescents aged 12 to 17 (63.1%) vaped nicotine but did not use tobacco products. In contrast, 88.9% of past month nicotine product users aged 26 or older used only tobacco products (2020 NSDUH)
  • Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death, often leading to lung cancer, respiratory disorders, heart disease, stroke, and other serious illnesses. The CDC reports that cigarette smoking causes more than 480,000 deaths each year in the United States
  • The CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health reports that more than 16 million Americans are living with a disease caused by smoking cigarettes

Electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) use data:

  • In 2021, 13.2 million people aged 12 or older (or 4.7%) used an e-cigarette or other vaping device to vape nicotine in the past month. The percentage of people who vaped nicotine was highest among young adults aged 18 to 25 (14.1% or 4.7 million people), followed by adolescents aged 12 to 17 (5.2% or 1.4 million people), then by adults aged 26 or older (3.2% or 7.1 million people).
  • Among people aged 12 to 20 in 2021, 11.0% (or 4.3 million people) used tobacco products or used an e-cigarette or other vaping device to vape nicotine in the past month. Among people in this age group, 8.1% (or 3.1 million people) vaped nicotine, 5.4% (or 2.1 million people) used tobacco products, and 3.4% (or 1.3 million people) smoked cigarettes in the past month. (2021 NSDUH)
  • Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s 2020 National Youth Tobacco Survey. Among both middle and high school students, current use of e-cigarettes declined from 2019 to 2020, reversing previous trends and returning current e-cigarette use to levels similar to those observed in 2018
  • E-cigarettes are not safe for youth, young adults, or pregnant women, especially because they contain nicotine and other chemicals


  • Tips for Teens: Tobacco
  • Tips for Teens: E-cigarettes
  • Implementing Tobacco Cessation Programs in Substance Use Disorder Treatment Settings
  • Synar Amendment Program


  • Truth Initiative
  • FDA Center for Tobacco Products
  • CDC Office on Smoking and Health
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: Tobacco, Nicotine, and E-Cigarettes
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: E-Cigarettes



  • Among people aged 12 or older in 2021, 3. 3% (or 9.2 million people) misused opioids (heroin or prescription pain relievers) in the past year. Among the 9.2 million people who misused opioids in the past year, 8.7 million people misused prescription pain relievers compared with 1.1 million people who used heroin. These numbers include 574,000 people who both misused prescription pain relievers and used heroin in the past year. (2021 NSDUH)
  • Among people aged 12 or older in 2020, 3.4% (or 9.5 million people) misused opioids in the past year. Among the 9.5 million people who misused opioids in the past year, 9.3 million people misused prescription pain relievers and 902,000 people used heroin (2020 NSDUH)
  • According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Understanding the Epidemic, an average of 128 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose


  • Medication-Assisted Treatment
  • Opioid Overdose Prevention Toolkit
  • TIP 63: Medications for Opioid Use Disorder
  • Use of Medication-Assisted Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder in Criminal Justice Settings
  • Opioid Use Disorder and Pregnancy
  • Clinical Guidance for Treating Pregnant and Parenting Women With Opioid Use Disorder and Their Infants
  • The Facts about Buprenorphine for Treatment of Opioid Addiction
  • Pregnancy Planning for Women Being Treated for Opioid Use Disorder
  • Tips for Teens: Opioids
  • Rural Opioid Technical Assistance Grants
  • Tribal Opioid Response Grants
  • Provider’s Clinical Support System - Medication Assisted Treatment Grant Program


  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: Opioids
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: Heroin
  • HHS Prevent Opioid Abuse
  • Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America
  • Addiction Technology Transfer Center (ATTC) Network
  • Prevention Technology Transfer Center (PTTC) Network



  • In 2021, marijuana was the most commonly used illicit drug, with 18. 7% of people aged 12 or older (or 52.5 million people) using it in the past year. The percentage was highest among young adults aged 18 to 25 (35.4% or 11.8 million people), followed by adults aged 26 or older (17.2% or 37.9 million people), then by adolescents aged 12 to 17 (10.5% or 2.7 million people).
  • The percentage of people who used marijuana in the past year was highest among young adults aged 18 to 25 (34.5%) compared with 16.3% of adults aged 26 or older and 10.1% of adolescents aged 12 to 17 (2020 NSDUH)
  • Marijuana can impair judgment and distort perception in the short term and can lead to memory impairment in the long term
  • Marijuana can have significant health effects on youth and pregnant women.


  • Know the Risks of Marijuana
  • Marijuana and Pregnancy
  • Tips for Teens: Marijuana

Relevant links:

  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: Marijuana
  • Addiction Technology Transfer Centers on Marijuana
  • CDC Marijuana and Public Health

Emerging Trends in Substance Misuse:

  • Methamphetamine—In 2019, NSDUH data show that approximately 2 million people used methamphetamine in the past year. Approximately 1 million people had a methamphetamine use disorder, which was higher than the percentage in 2016, but similar to the percentages in 2015 and 2018. The National Institute on Drug Abuse Data shows that overdose death rates involving methamphetamine have quadrupled from 2011 to 2017. Frequent meth use is associated with mood disturbances, hallucinations, and paranoia.
  • Cocaine—In 2019, NSDUH data show an estimated 5.5 million people aged 12 or older were past users of cocaine, including about 778,000 users of crack. The CDC reports that overdose deaths involving have increased by one-third from 2016 to 2017. In the short term, cocaine use can result in increased blood pressure, restlessness, and irritability. In the long term, severe medical complications of cocaine use include heart attacks, seizures, and abdominal pain.
  • Kratom—In 2019, NSDUH data show that about 825,000 people had used Kratom in the past month. Kratom is a tropical plant that grows naturally in Southeast Asia with leaves that can have psychotropic effects by affecting opioid brain receptors. It is currently unregulated and has risk of abuse and dependence. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that health effects of Kratom can include nausea, itching, seizures, and hallucinations.


  • Tips for Teens: Methamphetamine
  • Tips for Teens: Cocaine
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse

More SAMHSA publications on substance use prevention and treatment.

Last Updated: 01/05/2023

What to do if you get depressed because of debts: advice from an expert

We are used to writing about loans and how to properly apply for a loan and manage money wisely. But debts are also a big psycho-emotional burden, which in the end can fall on one person. What to do if, along with a loan, depression covers and how to get out of this situation?

Contents of the article

  • 1 Borrow, but wisely
  • 2 When depression comes along with credit
  • 3 Listen carefully to yourself
  • 4 Do not refuse help

Borrow, but wisely

Loans are a great opportunity to improve your living conditions: take a mortgage or a loan for repairs, purchase inaccessible household appliances or a new modern gadget , go on a long-awaited journey. All these are excellent opportunities, if a person has a constant and stable income, knows how to plan his expenses , taking into account the return of previously received funds to meet his needs. At the same time, albeit with some significant restrictions, he does not change his usual way of life in matters of nutrition, the acquisition of basic necessities, and has the opportunity to at least occasionally rest on a day off and allow himself to go somewhere. nine0003

In practice, this is not the case for everyone. Many take out consumer loans to make impulse purchases in order to feel happier in the moment and, in a sense, assert themselves. Then the extravaganza disappears from the moment and the person finds himself face to face with not the most pleasant reality.

Today the problem is particularly acute : the situation with covid-19 of the last year has made its own adjustments to the financial situation of Russians. Someone stayed afloat without loss, some improved their position against the background of the pandemic and opened a new relevant business, but most of the population suffered losses in terms of money: some people had a decrease in income, others were sent on indefinite leave without pay, and some have been fired without a foreseeable prospect of finding a new job. nine0003

It is not surprising that in the society of the number of debtors increased and the general depressive mood intensified.

When depression comes along with a loan

Debt obligations bring into the life of a person a complex conglomeration of feelings from confusion and fear to despair and hopelessness.

How people cope with debt problems that have arisen largely depends on the individual characteristics of each individual person (how he coped with crises and stresses throughout his life, on the degree of self-confidence, the level and stability of self-esteem), from the family situation and how support is provided to each other within the family, as well as from external circumstances (for example, from the presence of a certain accumulated amount, passive income, the number of dependents, etc.). nine0003

Depression is the extreme degree that people cannot cope with the situation and cold-bloodedly make a plan of action to return the money.

Depression is not just a temporary emotional deterioration . In the case of a negligent attitude to one's own well-being and with thoughts that everything will be resolved by itself, depression can develop into a serious disorder that will require psychiatric intervention with the use of medication. Moreover, the deterioration of the psycho-emotional state may be followed by general health problems. nine0003

Listen carefully to yourself

If a person finds himself in the situation described above, then from the very beginning it is necessary to treat yourself very carefully and condescendingly, remember that no one is immune from financial problems. Feelings of guilt, regrets about previous spending and a decrease in self-esteem, which lead to maladaptive behavior and inability to solve the problem , often act as faithful companions of depression. It is important to track the moments when these feelings arise and remind yourself that after every negative period of life, enlightenment follows. nine0003

But in order for a positive stage to come, it is important to take certain actions and destructive feelings are not helpers in this. This kind of meaningful monitoring of your own emotions will help you stay in touch with reality and prevent catastrophic thinking (“I will never find a job”, “I will starve to death”, “my life will never change”).

Practice shows that the stabilization of the psychological state also contributes to the written description of one's own experiences . With the help of this tool, a person structures what is happening inside and splashes negative emotions onto paper. This allows you to avoid dwelling on the same thoughts and prevents the development of a depressive mood.

Physical activity is an indispensable element in the fight against emotional emptiness . If before the crisis the sport was in life on a regular basis, then it is worth continuing to do it. You can always find an alternative to exercising in a fitness club: running, exercising in the warm season in the fresh air, doing exercises at home (and instead of a trainer, specialized videos from Internet sources). Of course, a person does not always have the strength to lead such an active lifestyle (it all depends on the degree of depression), but in this case, any physical actions are good: get out of bed, go brush your teeth, do a few squats, move from one room to another. Physical activity releases mood-enhancing hormones and helps reduce anxiety, which can help alleviate depression. nine0003

Do not refuse help

Do not refuse any support if it is offered by relatives, friends or acquaintances (in this case we are talking about emotional support, and not about taking on new material obligations): heart-to-heart conversations , joint walks and pastime. Categorically avoid communication, which can negatively affect psychological health.

And one of the important rules: when trying to improve your internal state, you should not take on everything at once (household chores, sports, walking, looking for work, etc.), in this case there is a great risk of giving up everything quickly and only worsening your condition. You need to start with small steps and gradually return yourself to a stable state. nine0003

If a person feels that he cannot cope on his own , and depression drags on and on, professionals will come to the rescue. If there are no funds for them, you can apply for free help, for example, to the Moscow Service for Psychological Assistance to the Population.

Only after a person more or less improves and stabilizes his health , it becomes possible to take steps to get out of the situation: stop creating new debts, review spending, draw up a budget, start looking for additional income, take a refinancing loan to reduce interest rate, etc.

9 life truths that will help you get rid of stress because of money - Ilya Solomennikov on


Financial problems are the reasons for the constant unrest of most people. Many families only make ends meet, barely reach their salaries, have debts on loans. They are unhappy, they look into the future with a bleak look.

This condition is only partly due to the lack of means of subsistence. Often the reason for the bleak situation of a person or family is a misunderstanding of simple truths about money. Therefore, simply by looking for an additional source of income, the problem of permanent stress due to financial difficulties cannot be solved. It is advisable to slightly or thoroughly change your worldview. nine0003

Of course, by increasing the amount of your income, you will be able to get rid of want for a while and forget about worries for the time being. But the calm will certainly not last long, and gloomy thoughts will return again. You can solve financial problems once and for all only by changing your attitude to money and the material side of life in general. Here are some things you need to learn in order to stop constantly worrying about money:

1. For a happy and comfortable life, a person needs much less than he thinks

Surely you know that many inhabitants of the Earth do not have things familiar to us, without which, it would seem, it is impossible to do. For example, various gadgets, household appliances, cars, branded shoes and clothes, beautiful furniture. Business has simply imposed on society the idea that it is impossible to do without such attributes.

People have been taught that the purchase of various goods that are produced by the richest corporations is a natural need. If a person is not able to buy an advertised product, he begins to experience dissatisfaction with his life. To get rid of stress due to low solvency, you should understand and accept that many things can be painlessly dispensed with. nine0003

2. Money does not bring happiness

Not all rich people are completely satisfied with their lives. Many of those who have millions and billions are not at all so happy, joyful. Among them are many individuals who have been suffering from depression for years. Therefore, the statement that it is necessary to have a lot of money to be happy is erroneous. Of course, money gives a feeling of stability and security. But they can't make a person happy. True pleasure is given by other things - love, closeness and health of relatives, peace of mind, hobbies and many other joys available to ordinary people, not necessarily rich. nine0003

3. Money is not the main purpose of activity, professional, creative or otherwise

Financial reward is not always the main motivation. Often a job that is not to their liking does not bring any satisfaction even with a high salary. Of course, earning an income that is commensurate with the effort put in can reduce work-related stress. But it's hard to work just for the money. In addition to material benefits, work should also bring moral satisfaction, promote self-development, the manifestation of talents and abilities. nine0003

4. Rich people also have their problems and difficulties

Of course, the poor have many financial and other problems. But wealthy people also have difficulties, and quite a few. Not everyone thinks about it, believing that wealth is a panacea for all ills. This is not true.

Money has both a light and a dark side, it brings both joy and problems. Wealth, for example, significantly distorts moral principles, makes a person more rigid, cynical and callous, as well as soulless and arrogant. Not everyone who managed to achieve a high position and excellent prosperity remained kind, humane, compassionate. nine0003

Big money often changes people for the worse, which harms them and their loved ones first of all. In addition, there are problems that even money cannot solve. So, they will not help you find true love, true friendship, establish good and sincere relationships with people. On the contrary, all this is rather accessible to people with low incomes. It is more difficult for the rich to find simple human relationships in their environment.

5. The pursuit of wealth deprives a person of the joy of life

The desire to earn more money takes a lot of time, effort and health. The waste of such valuable, sometimes irreplaceable resources contributes to the depreciation of the really important and significant that is in our lives.

It is better to get rid of the obsessive desire to get rich. This will not only reduce stress levels, but also free up resources and time for other, more constructive activities. The things that bring true joy are the enjoyment of natural beauties, the pleasure of watching your child grow up, the opportunity to get enough sleep, to have good health. For a person who is satisfied with life, calm, but not a loafer, financial problems will surely be gradually resolved. nine0003

6. The presence of restrictions is not harmful, but beneficial

There must be boundaries in everything. They form a certain way of life, its basis. Not total, but some limitations motivate a person to seek and find happiness, joy in what he has here and now under real circumstances, and not in fantasies.

In relation to finance, such boundaries will be a plan of expenses for a certain period of time. Those who want to live in peace and without debts cannot do without it. After all, if a person lives beyond their means, their expenses exceed their income, and life gets out of control. nine0003

Planning a personal budget helps to adjust your needs to the level of available income, not to get into debt. It disciplines, gives confidence in the ability to keep your life under control. A smart person lives within their means, and does not spend more than they earn.

7. Generosity is wonderful

Money should not be regretted if it is spent for good purposes. Generosity makes a person happier. As practice shows, those people who are not afraid to part with money have better health, a more eventful life, and also a much lower level of stress than those who prefer to take care only of profit. Therefore, it is desirable for everyone to engage in charity, regardless of income level. nine0003

8. The feeling of security, which is based on the possession of money, property, is unstable and passes quickly

It is generally believed that only with wealth can one feel confident in the future and protected from all adversity. A very controversial opinion. The accumulation of money and property is not capable of providing security: there are enough examples in history when people lost their assets in a lifetime in one day.

To feel secure, a person must be surrounded by the warmth and love of loved ones. Many rich people do not have this due to the fact that the accumulation of money, their multiplication and preservation has become the most important thing in life. Everything else faded into the background. In choosing partners for relationships and families, they are guided by the stereotypes of appearance and behavior imposed by the media. Classical values, including kindness, fidelity, beauty of the soul, sensitivity, without which it is impossible to experience the highest enjoyment of life, are ignored and squeezed out of the set of needs of rich people. nine0003

What kind of internal security, confidence in loved ones can we talk about if they stay close for the sake of money and property? The accumulation of wealth will not bring joy, a sense of security and peace.

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