Dual Diagnosis and Treatment

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Dual Diagnosis and Treatment:

Dual diagnosis is when a drug or alcohol addiction is paired with mental illness. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, around 8.9 million Americans struggle with both alcohol or drug addiction and mental illness. However, only 7.4 percent receive treatment for both, and over 55 percent receive no treatment at all. With such a high number of Americans dealing with a dual diagnosis, education is essential.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, those struggling with drug or alcohol abuse are twice as likely to struggle with mental illness. And it is likely that drug abuse developed when trying to self-medicate and cope with the mental illness. For those struggling with social anxiety, alcohol will inevitably make it easier to connect with people and feel at ease. People who feel depressed will likely feel more relaxed and happier if they smoke weed. Thus, dependency upon drugs or alcohol can develop in hopes that these substances will alleviate their debilitating symptoms.


Other mental illnesses include:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Schizophrenia
  • Bipolar syndrome
  • PTSD

Because of the high number of people struggling with a dual diagnosis, it is essential that drug abuse screenings and assessments include a mental illness component. Without treating both issues, recovery is impossible. Drug abuse rehabilitation will only be beneficial and sustainable if the issue of mental illness is also addressed and treated. Integrated treatment ensures that the drug addiction is addressed in the context of mental illness and vice versa. These are unique cases that require additional treatment and a unique plan to overcome the two in tandem.

Because dual diagnosis is such a huge issue in America and for the large part goes undiagnosed, education on this topic is key to overcoming addiction. On the whole, addiction emerges as a way to cope with mental illness. Therefore merely dealing with the symptoms of mental illness will never deal with the root of the issue. Finding a treatment center dedicated to your total health and wellbeing will be the answer to your victory over addiction.

Our trained treatment specialists are prepared to conduct confidential, over-the-phone assessments that will set you on the right path to recovery. Call us today at (888) 507-1355