A person who is diagnosed with both a mental illness and a substance addiction is said to be suffering from a dual diagnosis. Each of the disorders involved in a dual diagnosis can make the other worse, so treatment for these co-occurring disorders can be complex. A major research study by the National Institute of Mental Health revealed that up to 10 million adults in this country live with co-occurring disorders. Another study indicated that up to 60 percent of individuals receiving treatment for mental illness also suffer from a substance abuse problem.
Finding a treatment program that incorporates therapies for substance addiction and mental illness is a key strategy for dual diagnosis recovery. Call Drug Treatment Centers Lakeland at (863) 248-8588 to learn about the available options.
A case of co-occurring disorders can include any mental illness and any substance addiction, but certain pairs of disorders are more common than others. An addiction paired with a depressive disorder is the most likely manifestation of co-occurring disorders. A report found in the Journal of Clinical Psychology states that one in three individuals with a substance addiction also suffers from depression.
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is another mental health disorder that often occurs alongside addiction. People with OCD suffer from obsessive thoughts that are difficult to control, and they frequently turn to drugs or alcohol as a form of self-medication.
When a patient has co-occurring disorders, it’s important to select a rehab center that offers an integrated treatment plan. This type of treatment, which addresses both the mental illness and the addiction under one roof, provides the best chances for long-term recovery. Individuals with both an addiction and a mental health disorder are more likely to exhibit suicidal behavior and are in a fragile condition: A treatment center that specializes in co-occurring disorders will be equipped to handle the special needs of these patients.
A treatment plan for co-occurring disorders will incorporate both group and individual counseling. In therapy, patients learn how to deal with their urges to use and their psychiatric symptoms. They also develop practical coping techniques to handle these challenges once they leave the treatment center. Medication is often a key element of dual diagnosis treatment.
Many treatment medications are available to manage the symptoms of withdrawal and allow recovering individuals to focus their energy on therapy, and patients may also be prescribed medications that address their mental health issues. A large number of people with co-occurring disorders have never received treatment for their mental health disorder, and they experience significant improvements with the appropriate medication.
An integrated treatment plan tends to take longer than traditional addiction treatment, but the success rate justifies the additional time.
Recovering individuals face the risk of relapse for both their addiction and their mental health disorder. It’s common for individuals with these two conditions to return to substance use: Research by Dartmouth University revealed that up to two-thirds of patients with co-occurring disorders will have a relapse of their addiction. A relapse of either condition is treatable, as long as the individual recognizes the issue and receives the right treatment to get back on the path to recovery.
It can be difficult to face the challenges of recovery after leaving the treatment center, but aftercare services can help reduce the risk of relapse and provide a source of support. Continued therapy, 12-step programs and support groups are a few aftercare resources that can benefit individuals with co-occurring disorders. These services can keep recovering individuals from feeling isolated and allow them to interact with other people who are dealing with the same issues.