The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) reports that people who have anxiety or mood disorders are twice as likely to develop drug dependence and addiction. Recovering from addiction is a challenge that can be made more difficult by not having access to the correct type of care.
Having both drug abuse and mental health issues can affect the type of care you need and which types of treatments are recommended to help you begin and maintain addiction recovery.
If you or someone you know in Massachusetts is struggling with both mental health issues and substance abuse, finding a behavioral health treatment center that offers dual diagnosis treatment is highly recommended.
What Is Dual Diagnosis?
Dual diagnosis is a term that refers to having both a mental health disorder and a drug or alcohol problem. This is also known as having co-occurring disorders or comorbid disorders.
Common co-occurring disorders include:
- bipolar disorder
- attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- anxiety disorders
- post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- eating disorders
Substance abuse is also common among people with personality disorders, such as antisocial personality disorder and borderline personality disorder. For some people with dual diagnoses, drugs and alcohol are used as a way to self-medicate symptoms of mental illness.
Drinking and using drugs can be used as a coping strategy to manage symptoms, cope with stress, or to numb the pain of living with untreated mental illness.
Dual Diagnosis Treatment Services
Dual diagnoses are best treated by professionals who are trained to treat both substance abuse and mental health disorders. Treating only one or the other can be ineffective, and may increase the likelihood of relapse.
Dual diagnosis treatment integrates both drug abuse and mental health treatment services to best meet the needs of people with co-occurring disorders. The types of dual diagnosis treatment services you might find in a dual diagnosis program are described briefly here.
Having a dual diagnosis can affect your experience during drug or alcohol detox. Professional detox services can customize your detox experience to ensure you receive treatment that is capable of accounting for your mental health disorder and drug withdrawal symptoms.
Medical detox for dual diagnosis offers:
- 24/7 supervision
- behavioral support
- aftercare coordination
Mental Health Counseling
Behavioral therapies like cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and mental health counseling are core components of a dual diagnosis treatment program. Individual counseling can teach supportive coping strategies and help you learn to manage mental health symptoms in healthy ways.
Depending on the type of mental health disorder, a dual diagnosis treatment team may recommend the use of certain medications. Prescription medications can be helpful to ease drug withdrawal symptoms, reduce drug cravings, and treat mental health symptoms.
Dual diagnosis groups can be a useful way to learn skills to support your recovery and benefit from the peer support of others in similar situations. Group therapy offers social support, emotional support, and a safe space to share tips and strategies for maintaining drug addiction recovery while living with mental illness.
Diagnosing Co-Occurring Disorders In Drug And Alcohol Addiction Rehab
Everyone who is admitted into a drug rehab program undergoes an initial intake assessment to assess physical and mental health needs. During this time, residents can disclose previous mental health diagnoses, or be assessed for mental health issues.
Diagnosing a mental health disorder during substance abuse treatment can be complicated. Drugs and alcohol are mind-altering substances that can affect mental and psychological health.
The early weeks and months of sobriety can provide an opportunity to assess whether mental health symptoms you’ve experienced are indicative of an independent disorder or were caused by your drug use. Treatment for mental health symptoms in rehab — such as depression, anxiety, and hallucinations — can be adjusted accordingly.
Dual diagnosis clinicians will also look at your medical and mental health records to determine a treatment plan best suited to meet your needs. This may involve consulting previous doctors or counselors, as applicable.
Benefits Of Dual Diagnosis Treatment
Treating mental health conditions and substance abuse simultaneously is believed to be the most effective approach for treating a dual diagnosis.
Dual diagnosis treatment reduces the risk for relapse in early sobriety and offers a whole-person approach that recognizes the importance of treating the whole person, and not just one issue at a time. This helps to ensure that all of a person’s mental health care needs are met during the treatment process.
Find Dual Diagnosis Treatment In Massachusetts
If you’re looking for a dual diagnosis treatment center for yourself or a loved one in Massachusetts, Recovering Champions offers a range of outpatient treatment programs that feature dual diagnosis treatment.
Recovering Champions is an accredited New England treatment facility that treats substance abuse and dual diagnosis. We belong to a network of substance abuse treatment centers across the state that together offer a full continuum of care.
At Recovering Champions you’ll find:
- Day Treatment (Partial Hospitalization)
- Intensive Outpatient Treatment
- Outpatient Program
- Medication-Assisted Treatment
Located about 70 miles out of Boston, our outpatient rehab center serves all major areas across the Bay State, including Worcester, Brockton, Attleboro, and the Cape Cod area. Our addiction treatment center also partners with nearby detox centers and sober living homes.
The COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t kept Recovering Champions from helping New England residents access life-changing addiction treatment. Call us today to learn more about our dual diagnosis treatment programs and the types of treatments we have to offer.