Recovery Center Blog

Dual Diagnosis Addiction Treatment: Recovery from Addiction and Mental Illness

Written By Recovery Centers - August 4th, 2022
Dual Diagnosis Addiction Treatment: Recovery from Addiction and Mental Illness

When someone suffers from a substance use disorder and a mental health condition simultaneously, it is known as a dual diagnosis or co-occurring disorder. For example, a person may struggle with addiction and deal with depression, anxiety, or bipolar disorder.

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration, “approximately 9.2 million adults in the United States have a co-occurring disorder.”[1]

People who struggle with a dual diagnosis may have difficulty functioning in their everyday lives due to the symptoms they experience daily. It is essential to note that when a mental health condition is not treated, the person’s substance abuse will worsen. This is why the conditions must be treated simultaneously at a dual diagnosis treatment facility.

What is Dual Diagnosis Treatment?

People with untreated mental health conditions often turn to drugs or alcohol to cope with their symptoms–a dangerous practice known as self-medication. Over time, the frequent abuse of substances will lead to dependency and, ultimately, addiction.

Addiction is closely associated with an array of mental illnesses including anxiety and depression. In some cases, mental illness is the basis for developing addiction, while other people may suffer from addiction first and develop a mental health condition as a result of their substance abuse. Whether addiction or mental health comes first, people with co-occurring disorders must receive treatment for both conditions at the same time.

If someone identifies with the following statements, dual diagnosis treatment may be a good fit:

  • Their family has a history of mental illness and addiction
  • They cannot remember their life without drugs or alcohol
  • They have experienced trauma in their lifetime, recently, or in the past
  • Their method of coping with anxiety or depression is abusing substances

Dual diagnosis addiction treatment includes traditional addiction treatment methodologies and combines them with evidence-based mental health recovery techniques. The goal of dual diagnosis rehab is to provide the patient with the tools and coping mechanisms they need to cope with their symptoms of mental illness and overcome the grasp of addiction.

How Does Dual Diagnosis Rehab Work?

Dual diagnosis rehab uses personalized treatment plans that target the unique needs of each patient. This ensures that every patient is focusing on recovering from issues they suffer from directly, instead of wasting time on things that do not apply to the individual.

Treatment plans include a variety of services, including individual time with a therapist to address addiction and mental health concerns, group therapy that allows patients to interact with their peers, medication management, and much more.

Treatment plans will be unique to the individual, however, they always include:

  • Detox services
  • Multiple individual therapy sessions per week with a counselor
  • Visits with the psychiatrist and medical staff
  • Family therapy to educate the family on addiction and the recovery process
  • Group counseling to improve communication skills and promote healthy relationships with others

The first step in a dual diagnosis program is intake and assessment. This is where patients will give intimate details about their medical, mental health, substance abuse, and family history. All this information will help medical providers get a big picture of the patient’s needs and goals for treatment so they can develop an individually-tailored approach.

Patients are also assessed by a psychiatrist to determine their mental health diagnosis. Even if a patient comes in with a prior diagnosis, the mental health experts will evaluate them to ensure that their diagnosis is appropriate. This will give the staff members the information they need to create an individually-tailored treatment plan for each patient.

How to Find a Dual Diagnosis Treatment Program

There are many ways to find a dual diagnosis rehab center. The first step is to call the health insurance provider to get a list of treatment programs in their area that accepts their insurance.

However, not everyone has insurance, so how else can someone find a dual diagnosis rehab center?

Programs like Recovery Centers offer an easy and straightforward way to find local drug and alcohol rehab centers. By going on their website, a person can simply enter their location and find all of the treatment programs that offer co-occurring disorder support.

While searching for a treatment program, look for programs that highlight their staff-to-patient ratio. Programs that have a low staff-to-patient ratio typically have more time to provide each patient with the treatment they need, which is especially important for dual diagnosis patients. The facility should also specialize in the specific mental health condition that a prospective patient suffers from, as this will provide them with the best possible treatment.

Get Connected With a Top-Rated Dual Diagnosis Treatment Center Near You

At Recovery Centers, we pride ourselves on helping our clients find the best treatment program for their needs. If you suffer from co-occurring disorders, we can help you find a dual diagnosis treatment center in your area.

No matter where you live, there is a drug rehab center that can help you overcome your addiction. We can help you find treatment based on your location, budget, and specific needs and help you get started quickly.

Contact us today for more information on how to get started.