In addition to sharing her talents with the world, Demi Lovato has shared her experiences with bipolar disorder and drug addiction. She has also had bouts of anorexia, bulimia, and self-harm. In fact, her bipolar disorder is what led her to use drugs and alcohol to cope with her symptoms and to “just feel normal.” Getting the right diagnosis was the first step in helping her live a healthy life, and in feeling truly good about herself.
Demi is not alone in having more than one condition—as many as 6 in 10 people with a substance use disorder also suffer from a mental health condition such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, or bipolar disorder. She is also not alone in her recovery. Over 23 million Americans are in recovery from alcohol and other drugs—according to Faces and Voices of Recovery, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping people get the treatment and services they need to sustain long-term recovery.
Demi has accomplished much in her young life—but what truly sets her apart is her courage to get treatment for her conditions and to use her struggles to help encourage others to get the treatment they need. By sharing her story, she helps reduce the stigma around drug abuse and mental health issues. She has also decided that she can be a force for positive change by joining the National Alliance on Mental Illness to lobby congress to pass comprehensive mental health legislation.
NIDA congratulates Demi on pursuing treatment and working so hard to help others who are in similar situations.
Happy 3-year sobriety anniversary, Demi!