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What is Dual Diagnosis Treatment?

A person is labelled to have a dual diagnosis when he has an addiction to drugs, alcohol, or gambling that is further complicated by a co-existing mental health disorder.

Dual Diagnosis affects nearly 8.9 million Americans every year and only 7.4% of those receive appropriate treatment.

Treatment of dual diagnosis is a relatively new one in the field of drug addiction recovery. Before the 1990’s, people who experienced symptoms of mental health disorders, for example, depression, anxiety attacks, mood swings or psychosis, were managed differently and separately from those who sought treatment for their drug addictions. When these two conditions overlapped, as occurs in dual diagnosis, people were denied treatment for their mental health issues until they got completely sober and clean. Unfortunately, quite often, as substance abuse disorder is driven or aggravated by an underlying psychiatric illness, people suffering from it never got the appropriate help they needed.

In the present century, the treatment plans of dual diagnosis blend the most successful features of drug abuse treatment and mental health care. Rather than drawing a hard line between addiction and mental health, both are treated as parts of a continuum. Dedicated addiction rehab centers like Indy Drug Rehab provide amenities which are individualized for people having a dual diagnosis.

What an Individual can do?

While some individuals are honest and open about their well-being, others may refuse to have any problem at all. Refusal is a common reaction by those who do not want to get the help. There can be many reasons as to why an individual is denying having any problem at all.

For example, many times the individuals with mental illness or drug abuse disorder are ashamed of admitting. They may consider it as a failure or personal shortcoming that they are ashamed to open up about. Addiction and mental health can be a very sensitive subject. In such cases, it is best that they discuss the matter with a trained counselor or treatment specialist. The earlier the signs and symptoms of a dual diagnosis are identified and treated, the greater the probability of a successful and life-long recovery. Sweeping the issue under the rug will only further complicate the problems.

Treatment Options:

One-size-fits-all solutions are not good enough to treat a patient with a dual diagnosis. Typically, a detailed management plan is the most effective and safest way to deal with dual diagnosis. There is powerful evidence to support that with the right help, people with dual diagnosis can stabilize and recover completely.

Depending on the severity of illness, dual diagnosis may require or benefit from an inpatient care or an outpatient care.

The inpatient care demands the patient to live and receive treatment at the rehab center for a particular period of time. On the other hand, the outpatient care is more flexible than the inpatient care and can vary in time commitment and intensity.

A large aspect of dual diagnosis treatment is rooted in behavioral interventions. Types of therapies commonly used include:

  • Dialectic Behavioral Therapy
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Integrated Group Therapy
  • Individual Psychotherapy
  • Family Therapy

These therapies are often combined with medications when needed. Medications vary according to the individuals and the severity of their diagnosis. Some of the common medications used for the purpose include anticonvulsants, mood stabilizers, anti-anxiety drugs, anti-depressants, etc. At Drug Rehab Indy, we offer a comprehensive psychopharmacological evaluation of our clients to ascertain if medications in combination with behavioral therapies would be the propitious course of action for them.

Who Should Choose Inpatient Drug Rehab?

This program is suitable for the following people:

  • Addicts who previously attended any other form of addiction treatment that failed to work
  • Addicts who have dual-diagnosis such as depression, anxiety disorders, eating disorders, schizophrenia, etc. or have abused multiple drugs simultaneously
  • Addicts who live in conditions that do not allow them to stay away from drugs, for example, living with other addicts

Before opting for an inpatient program, remember that it requires a full-time commitment and the patients are asked to follow a specific set of rules and regulations.

Common Mental Health Issues and Addiction:

Sometimes the mental issues occur first which can lead the people to use drugs or alcohol to make them feel better for the time being. Sometimes the drug abuse begins first which can lead to the development of mental and emotional problems over time. Common mental health conditions that are related to addiction include Bipolar disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder, Depression Eating Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Schizophrenia, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

The National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) reports that there is a precise link between mental health issues and the abuse of addictive substances. People having mental health disorders are responsible for the utilization of:

  • 38 percent of alcohol
  • 40 percent of cigarettes
  • 44 percent of cocaine

It also reports that people who get diagnosed with a mental health issue are responsible for the consumption of the following substance at some point in their lives:

  • 69 percent of alcohol
  • 68 percent of cigarettes
  • 84 percent of cocaine

These statistics show that there is a clear link between drug abuse and mental health issues, and any combinations can develop with its own unique group of causes and symptoms as well as its own optimal dual diagnosis interventions and treatment methods.

Why Co-occurring Disorders are Treated Differently?

As a result of new studies being conducted and with an update in our knowledge about addiction and its connection with mental health disorders, we now know that these both conditions are very intertwined and often occur as a result of each other. Because of this, co-occurring disorders must be treated differently than these individual conditions occurring separately – a practice that has gained popularity slowly.

Failing to do so might make the situation worse and even harder to manage.

Warning Signs of Co-occurring Disorder:

The official diagnosis of dual diagnosis is made by an addiction specialist or a mental health professional.

However, below mentioned are some warning signs that indicate that an individual may have a co-occurring disorder:

  • The individual uses a drug to escape from reality and psychological problems
  • The individual has a history of mental illness
  • Trying to quit drugs may make the individual violent, angry, or suicidal
  • The individual has a family history of mental illness
  • Drugs make the individual feel like normal

Common Underlying Factors May Contribute to a Dual Diagnosis:

Research suggests that there are many underlying factors that may contribute to a dual diagnosis. Genetics is one of them, for example, some individuals have a specific gene that makes them susceptible to an increased risk of developing mental health disorder in adulthood if they used marijuana frequently in their childhood. Genetics can also have an impact on how an individual respond to a certain drug – whether or not using it makes him feel better.

Certain environmental factors like trauma and stress can also influence and contribute to the dual diagnosis.

Dual Diagnosis has Social Effects:

The physical and psychological effects of dual diagnosis are often discussed but what about the social effects?

Just like drug addiction or any mental health disorder individually, a dual diagnosis does not only affect the sufferer but has far reaching effects which encompass friends, family, employers, and society as a whole. The patient does not realize the consequences of his problem and the effects on society. Dual diagnosis can negatively affect the following:

  • Family life
  • Relationships/Marriage
  • Employment and financial issues
  • Health issues
  • Education
  • Personality
  • Law and order

Get Help for a Dual Diagnosis from Addiction Rehab Centers:

Dual diagnosis is complex and so is its treatment. But you can succeed in recovery with the right care and support which is offered at Addiction Rehab Centers. Indy Drug Rehab is listed among the top Indianapolis drug rehabs. We have a leading team of highly trained addiction and mental health specialists to deal with all the aspects of dual diagnosis. We are here to assist you or any of loved one suffering from dual diagnosis to get life back on track and get sober. So if you are looking for a good drug rehab Indy, make sure you contact Addiction Rehab Centers for right care and guidance.