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What is Dual Diagnosis?

There is a strong correlation between mental health disorders and addiction. Dual Diagnosis refers to the practice of treating both issues simultaneously. Many people who struggle with addiction have underlying mood or mental health disorders that contributed to their addictive behavior. Often, one of the underlying reasons for substance abuse is the attempt to self-medicate mental health problems such as anxiety or depression with substances.

By addressing the causes that drove us deeper into addiction, our ability to recovery from drug and alcohol abuse is greatly increased. Sobriety in combination with healthy coping skills and, in some cases, medication, usually diminish or remove the symptoms of mental health problems that exacerbated our addiction. Dual Diagnosis can be complicated, however, because it is difficult to determine what is causing the symptoms. Usually, mood disorders like anxiety and depression existed before we began using drugs and alcohol, but became worse as we attempted to self-medicate them in unhealthy ways. The combination of addiction and mental health problems make patients very high-risk for relapse, suicide, and violent behavior, so it is imperative to treat both issues simultaneously.

Because of the complex nature of addiction and mental illness, it’s necessary for a person to be forthcoming with their doctor about the nature of their addiction and mental health problems. This allows a doctor to determine the most effective course of treatment to give the patient the greatest possibility of recovering from both their addiction and mental health disorder. Until recently, it was believed that mental illness and addiction should be treated sequentially. Today, the overriding philosophy is that dual diagnosis should be treated concurrently, providing a total holistic approach to recovery.

Life in active addiction is no way to live. If you are struggling or care for someone who is struggling with addiction, you know that life can be better. It’s time to live. Ready? Set- GO. Resilient House cultivates the resilience necessary to those in recovery for lasting wellness of mind, body, and spirit. Bringing together the best in clinical and holistic expertise, our full continuum of care is designed to help you change your life for good. Call us today for information: 833-CHANGE1