If you or someone you love is suffering from a substance abuse disorder, you know that it can be incredibly difficult to get the help you need. Whether it’s drugs, alcohol, gambling, or another substance that’s causing problems for you and your family, addiction can make every aspect of life feel overwhelming—and it’s hard to know where to start when it comes to getting help.
But there’s one thing you don’t have to worry about and that is finding the right option for dual-diagnosis treatment. When someone has both a substance abuse disorder and another mental health condition such as depression or anxiety, they’re considered “dual diagnosed.” And while this may sound scary, it doesn’t mean that your loved one will never recover from their addiction. In fact, dual-diagnosis treatment is becoming more common than ever before thanks to advances in technology and research. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us for more information or to schedule a visit!
A dual diagnosis is when a person has two mental health disorders at the same time. It’s most commonly used to refer to people with both a substance abuse disorder and another mental health disorder, like depression or anxiety.
It can be hard to know whether someone has a substance abuse disorder or a mental health disorder because they often overlap with each other. For example, people who have been diagnosed with depression often drink more than people who don’t have depression—but it could also mean that they’re using alcohol as an escape from their depression symptoms.
Dual-diagnosis treatment helps you find the right combination of medications, counseling, and other therapies so that you can start feeling better sooner rather than later.
One of the biggest challenges with diagnosing and treating dual diagnosis patients is identifying them in the first place. So how do you know if someone needs to be treated at a dual diagnosis center? The answer is simple: they have symptoms of both mental illness and substance abuse issues.
If you think someone in your life could be experiencing both mental illness and substance abuse problems, take note of their behavior over time. When someone has been diagnosed with one condition, their symptoms will often cause them to behave differently than they did before they were diagnosed. If you notice these changes in behavior—whether it’s increased anxiety or depression, or decreased motivation or socialization—and you see that they’re also engaging in self-destructive behaviors like using drugs or alcohol excessively or engaging in risky sexual activity, then there’s a good chance that person needs dual diagnosis treatment.
If you continue to observe these behaviors and suspect that a loved one is suffering from both mental illness and substance abuse problems, it’s important that you don’t leave them alone. Reach out to family members or friends who can help get this person into treatment. Alternatively consider getting professional tele-health assistance from a mental health establishment like The Blanchard Institute who can assess the situation and recommend the appropriate dual diagnosis treatment options.
Dual-diagnosis treatment involves treating two separate conditions at once—not only addiction but also other mental health issues like depression or anxiety. This kind of treatment usually involves cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) as well as medication management and group therapy sessions where family members can participate if desired. The goal of dual diagnosis treatment is to give you the tools you need to manage both conditions in your life. While there are many types of dual diagnosis treatment programs available, they all work toward the same goal: helping people overcome their addiction while also treating any co-occurring mental health disorders.
Dual-diagnosis treatment is a complicated process, and it’s important to be aware of the warning signs of a co-occurring disorder.
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction and mental illness, it might be tempting to try to treat them separately. But this kind of approach can actually do more harm than good. Dual-diagnosis treatment means that you’re getting treatment for both the addiction and the mental health issue at once—and that’s how it should be.
When it comes to co-occurring disorders, there are several warning signs that you should watch out for:
1) Changes in behavior (like mood swings or sudden changes in energy levels). This can include everything from irritability and anger issues to depression and anxiety.
2) Changes in physical appearance (like weight loss or weight gain). If someone has been abusing drugs or alcohol for an extended period of time, they could start losing weight because of malnutrition or other factors related to substance abuse. They may also start gaining weight if their drug use causes them to become inactive or depressed about their situation.
3) Mood swings (such as depression or anxiety). Mood swings are a common symptom associated with both addiction and mental illness; however, it’s important to note that some mood swings can be related to other factors in addition to drug use. For example, people who are depressed because of certain life events may start abusing drugs or alcohol as a way to cope with their depression.
4) Changes in sleeping patterns (such as insomnia or excessive sleep). Sleeping problems can be a telltale sign of drug use, especially if you’re not sleeping as much as you normally do. It’s important to note that some people who are depressed may also have difficulty sleeping; however, they often experience different symptoms such as nightmares and trouble falling asleep.
If you have a dual diagnosis, it can be easy to believe that self-medicating is the best solution. After all, many people who are struggling with mental health issues also have substance abuse issues. It makes sense to try to treat both at the same time. But while it seems like a good idea, there are a couple of reasons why this isn’t actually the best way to go about it.
First of all, self-medicating doesn’t always work. Oftentimes when we’re struggling with mental health issues and substance abuse problems, we need professional help from doctors and therapists who know how to treat us. They can help us find a treatment plan that works for us and our specific needs. They can also help us learn how to cope with our emotions in healthier ways than using substances or engaging in other destructive behaviors.
The second reason why self-medication isn’t always a good idea is because it doesn’t address any underlying causes of your problems—it just masks them temporarily. And while this may seem harmless at first glance (and even helpful), when you don’t deal with the root cause of your problems, those issues will continue to flare up again and again until they’re finally dealt with properly through therapy or medication management programs.
The Blanchard Institute offers dual diagnosis treatment that includes comprehensive care for those who suffer from both substance abuse and mental health disorders. Our experienced therapists can help you address the underlying issues that cause substance abuse by providing individualized treatment plans that meet your unique needs.
Although these problems often occur together, this does not mean that one caused the other, even if one appeared first. In fact, it can be hard to figure out which came first. Researchers think that there are three possibilities as to why they occur together:
It can be hard to approach a loved one struggling with addiction. But by being a good listener, practicing empathy and not trying to control are ways to be present with their struggle and allow space for them to come to you on their own terms whenever they might be in distress or needing someone to talk to.
You can always give us a call here at TBI, we would be happy to discuss our dual diagnosis treatment options with you! Or you can start with your primary care physician. Survey individualized care plans that treat the whole person, including any other co-occurring disorders—not just substance dependency.
Even though a dual diagnosis can be frightening and confusing, you don’t have to go through this difficult time alone. There is hope for recovery, and with the use of facts, resources, and the various treatments available!