Used to describe the co-morbid (pertaining to a disease or other pathological process that occurs simultaneously with another) condition of a person suffering from both a mental illness and a substance abuse problem is known as dual diagnosis. In cases where a person is diagnosed with this illness, the person needs to treat both with dual diagnosis rehab to fully recover.
Dual Diagnosis Rehab Statistics in Mental Health Treatment
More common than you might think, studies show 37% of alcohol abusers and 53% of drug abusers have at least one serious mental illness. Furthermore, of those diagnosed with a mental illness, 29% abuse either drugs or alcohol.
The National Institute of Mental Health conducted a study listing the seven major disorders associated with dual diagnosis and how much each one increases an individual’s risk for substance abuse.
DisorderIncreased Risk for Substance Abuse
Antisocial personality disorder 15.5%
Panic disorder 4.3%
Major depressive episode 4.1%
The Development of Dual Diagnosis Issues
Which problem develops first is unclear. More often than not, it is the psychiatric problem that appears first. For example, in a situation where someone is dealing with an antisocial personality disorder, they may attempt to feel calmer or more cheery by drinking or using drugs. This is self-medication. As a result, this may lead to physical or psychological dependence. In cases where alcohol or drug dependency is the primary condition, episodes of fits of rage, depression, or suicide attempts may develop as a result.
Although treatment can be difficult, it does exist. Treatment should be integrative, not separate. And, should be a collective decision between the treatment center and the patient. Finally, recovery is often viewed as a marathon, not a spring, and the methods and outcome goals need to be explicit.
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Dr. Rodriguez founded the Delray Center in 2003 and built it on a foundation of core clinical, professional, and ethical principles that are adhered to still to this day. Dr. Rodriguez founded the Delray Center in 2003 and built it on a foundation of core clinical, professional, and ethical principles that are adhered to still to this day.