Dual diagnosis describes a condition where people suffer from both a mental illness and a substance abuse problem. There is a wide range of dual diagnosis conditions, with a single category used to define a mixed group of people. Some of the more well-known dual diagnosis disorders include alcoholism and anti-social personality disorder, marijuana addiction and schizophrenia, cocaine addiction and anxiety disorders, and heroin addiction and depression. The variety and differences between conditions has led to some controversy over the definition of dual diagnosis, with treatment centers also challenged by the complex interplay between different, yet related disorders.
When analyzing co-occurring disorders, medical staff must be able to differentiate between pre-existing and substance-induced disorders. For example, while certain symptoms of mental illness can point toward pre-existing mental health problems, they may also exist due to the abuse of certain drugs.
Telling the difference between substance-induced psychiatric syndromes and mental disorders is a tricky business, and something that we at Melbourne Drug Treatment Centers, strive to discern and treat throughout the patients’ stay. Some of the mental health disorders most common to dual diagnoses include depression, eating disorders, anti-social personality disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).
It’s important to note, however, that a wide range of mental health problems can be associated with substance abuse. If you are suffering from substance dependence, as well as symptoms of mental illness, you need professional help. Call Melbourne Drug Treatment Centers today at (321) 203-5028, and start living a drug free life.
According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, anti-social personality disorder (ASPD) has a particularly close link with alcoholism. While alcohol abuse has also been linked to dementia, mania, drug addiction and schizophrenia, people who abuse alcohol on a regular basis are 21 times more likely to have ASPD compared to people without an alcohol abuse problem.
Even when the link between these two conditions exists from an early age, alcohol addiction can make the underlying mental health disorder more extreme as inhibitions are lowered and anti-social traits come to the foreground. Alcoholism can lead to mental illness in certain individuals, with the pre-existence of certain mental disorders making alcoholism more likely for others.
The connection between cocaine abuse and anxiety disorders is also strong, with people who abuse cocaine are more likely to suffer from paranoia, violence, insomnia, hallucinations, suspiciousness and other anxiety-related issues. Depression can also be an issue for people who abuse cocaine and heroin, both while they are addicted to the drug and during the withdrawal process.
Because long-term heroin abuse alters the portion of the brain responsible for producing pleasure signals, addicts have to make new connections after they stop using the drug. This is a major issue for therapists and people recovering from heroin addiction, who may have to manage the psychological effects of past drug dependence long after the physical effects have been dealt with.
At Drug Treatment Centers Melbourne, we have a number of methods for dealing with dual diagnosis, including a range of drug rehab therapy programs. Psychopharmacology, psychotherapy and behavioral management may all be used to manage mental health and dependence problems, with relapse prevention programs also necessary to prevent patients from returning to their old ways.
While partial treatment may involve the separation and treatment of what is thought to be the primary problem, comprehensive treatment requires a multi-pronged approach. Some drugs are effective in treating dual diagnosis, including baclofen for alcoholics and some drug addicts. Dual diagnosis is a large and complex issue, which requires integrated and creative solutions in order to stop the cycle of abuse.
At Drug Treatment Centers Melbourne, we can provide the appropriate treatment you need to overcome your substance dependence and emotional and mental health issues. We are here to guide you through every step of the process. Call us now at (321) 203-5028.
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