Dual Diagnosis Treatment Program

Dual Diagnosis Treatment Program

Are you eager to increase your chances of achieving full recovery? You should choose the dual diagnosis treatment program.

The dual diagnosis treatment program is a new development in the area of drug addiction treatments. In the 20th century, separate treatment methods were used for mental health disorders and drug addiction. However, later when the abusers denied their treatment, it was found that drug addiction has close relation with the underlying psychiatric disorder. The National Institute of Drug Abuse reported that almost half of the drug addict individuals have a diagnosable mental disorder. According to a theory, certain drugs of abuse develop mental health issues such as

  • Marijuana induces psychosis
  • Cocaine also imparts detrimental effects on the brain that cause euphoria and depression.

So, dual diagnosis treatment of mental disorder and addiction program provided the help they needed. 

What is Dual Diagnosis? 

The top approach for treating individuals dealing with drug addiction and co-occurring mental disorders is to ponder all the treatment options. When a person becomes addicted to a drug of abuse and gets diagnosed with mental health issues, such a condition is a dual diagnosis. Any one of the disorders can give rise to the other one.

A huge range of flexible and affordable treatment options are easily available for individuals battling with co-occurring disorders. Behavioral therapies and pharmacological treatments are the top options.

Why the mental illness and substance use disorders occur together? 

Although both disorders might coincide, one is not the reason for the other. In reality, it may be challenging to determine which appears first. Here are the three possibilities which show why both the disorders occur together.

Common risk factors

Stress, trauma, and genetics are the common risk factors that cause substance use disorder and mental illness. 

Mental disorder is linked with a drug use disorder. 

For instance, individuals with mental illness like stress, trauma, or depression may continue to use alcohol or other abusive substances to feel much better. This is called self-medication. Additionally, mental illnesses significantly alter brain function, which may compel you to get addicted.

Drug use disorder is related to mental illness.

The repetitive use of the drug may cause changes in the brain and develop any mental disorder.

How do you know that someone needs a dual diagnosis treatment center? 

  1. An individual who has a dual diagnosis suffers from drug abuse disorder and a co-occurring mental illness. Many dual diagnosis treatment centers allow the abuser to know about the symptoms of their disorder.
  2. The most significant symptom of the dual diagnosis disorder is that people begin retreating from their relationships with friends and family.
  3. They feel difficulty in managing their routine activities and putting an end to drug abuse.
  4. Over time, the drug addict develops high tolerance to the drug and begins frequent use under unsafe conditions.
  5. Whenever they feel down, they need the substance of abuse for their health. 

What is the prevalence of dual diagnosis? 

According to a report, over 8.5 million individuals suffered from co-occurring disorders in 2017. However, another report suggests that in 2018, over 9.2 million men and women in America struggled with co-occurring disorders. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration suggests that one had an addiction in every 4 individuals with mental issues. Although the disorder is highly prevalent, only 8.3 million people got treated.

Another research suggests that in 2019, 9.5 million individuals (aged 18 to 25) had substance use disorder along with the co-occurring disease.  

What is a Co-occurring Disorder? 

When a person is diagnosed with more than one mental health disorder, it is referred to as co-occurring disorder. Such disorders may co-occur to one after the other. There exist a close relationship between mental health issues and SUD. If a person is diagnosed with one, he will probably develop the other one in his lifetime. One disorder may worsen the severity of the other one. Here are the 2 mechanisms that show the prevalence of co-occurring disorders;


Mental disorders may urge the individual to increase the intake of the substance of abuse. This method is commonly called self-medication. However, it is highly harmful because a drug can mask the symptoms, but at the same time, it may also exacerbate the symptoms for an indefinite time.  

Why is it dangerous to self-medicate yourself? 

When you are struggling with substance abuse and mental health issues, seek help from the professionals who offer the best dual diagnosis treatment program. Most people with mental ailments begin to use abusive drugs or alcohol to self-medicate themselves. However, these substances of abuse make them feel good temporarily. The symptoms may wear off for some time, but afterward, they repeatedly need to use it to relieve mental disorder symptoms.

How is self-medication dangerous? Self-medication is harmful as it can result in drug addiction. It may make the treatment difficult for both mental illness and drug addiction. Additionally, the relapse occurs more strongly.       

Signs that indicate you must seek help from a dual diagnosis treatment program 

  1. Increased use of alcohol or other addictive substances to reduce your depression, anxiety, and mood swings.
  2. Dealing with psychiatric symptoms such as anxiety attacks, or manic episodes after the intake of drugs
  3. Not socializing with friends and other family members.
  4. Having problems in the job, and personal relationships
  5. Experiencing legal problems and incarceration due to substance abuse and behavioral problems.
  6. The appearance of the symptoms of mental disorder
  7. Drug use disorder stimulates psychiatric relapse.

Overlapping Risk Factors 

Common risk factors for mental disorders and SUDs often overlap each other. The hereditary and environmental factors like trauma may expose a person to develop problems.

Drug-induced mental changes 

If you have mental health issues and using the substance of abuse, your brain may go through different changes. These may affect your brain and lead to anxiety disorders, mood swings, post-traumatic stress disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, and other related disorders. 

What are the symptoms of co-occurring disorders?  

A dual diagnosis treatment center offers treatment for both drug addiction and co-occurring disorders. There are various co-occurring disorders; some are as follows;

  1. Anxiety
  2. Depression
  3. Borderline personality disorder
  4. Schizophrenia
  5. Bipolar disorder
  6. Post-traumatic stress disorder
  7. Eating disorder

It has been found that people suffering from bipolar disorder are 5 times more likely to get addicted to drugs or alcohol.  

Treatment Therapies for Dual Diagnosis

According to research, the therapies for mental illness are equally effective for dual diagnosis. Similarly, the treatment program for the drug addict is useful for the cure of other ailments. What is the best treatment for dual diagnosis patients? The types of treatment depend upon the individual’s needs. Treating a person normally, not a collection of diseases is one of the dual diagnosis treatment guidelines.

The effective treatment program is designed with respect to the individual’s needs. Some individuals abuse stimulants, while others are addicted to opiates. The withdrawal effects of the stimulants are more than the opiates. Most importantly, the presence of co-occurring disorders impacts the design of the treatment plan.

Some of the top therapies for dual diagnosis are as follows.

1.    Cognitive-behavioral therapy 

If you are struggling with abusive substance addiction or mental illness, cognitive behavioral therapy is the most evidence-based therapy program that efficiently assists you. This treatment option helps you to relieve stress and seek recovery. Dual diagnosis treatment centers are equipped with the essential tools you need for the long-term recovery from the disease. Cognitive-behavioral therapy include the following key ideas;

  • Talk about the negative behavioral patterns that associate with psychological issues.
  • The specialist helps you to identify the most distorted thoughts that cause issues.
  • This treatment will motivate you to adopt better behavior.
  • Once you determine that how the negativity is affecting your life, you will start the journey of defeating these processes.
  • The learning of problem-solving skills helps you to deal with the most difficult situation in the future.

Evidence-based behavioral therapy includes

  • Individual therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Family therapy
  • Motivational interviews
  • Dialectical behavior therapy

Moreover, drug use disorder negatively impacts the body, mind, and soul and each of the above areas significantly helps in the healing.

2.    Integrated treatment plan for dual diagnosis 

The treatment plan used for substance abuse is quite different from the dual diagnosis treatment program. In this therapy option, both disorders are treated simultaneously, referred to as integrated treatment.

The lack of integrated treatment options may allow individuals to experience challenges during the treatment process. For instance

  • Lack of integration with peers during therapy
  • High chances of stopping treatment early
  • Rapid relapse after treatment

Integrated treatment typically goes longer and helps you to get out of the crisis. During the treatment, the individuals may undergo some serious medical, social, and emotional issues. The dual diagnosis treatment centers can effectively manage these problems.

3.    Residential rehab for the dual diagnosis treatment program 

Treatments of the patients with addictive disorder combined with co-occurring disorders need an integrated approach towards the therapy. The residential rehab centers offer a well-organized environment for the people who encounter challenges during their recovery process. All the stressors of routine life are usually eliminated from the residential treatment centers, which help you stay attentive and develop coping abilities. Such rehabs are best for those who want to restore their psychological and emotional health.

Residential Rehab for Dual Diagnosis  

This is not that easy to know if you need the treatment in the residential rehab or not. With this treatment program, the clients suffering from mental issues such as depression, bipolar disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder render it difficult to know the signs of addiction. When the dual diagnosis treatment begins, it can be challenging to differentiate between drug addiction symptoms or any other psychiatric disorder. So initially, you must get to know the demand for the treatment for your optimal health.

Methods used in residential rehab for dual diagnosis 

  • Firstly the clients have to go through the detoxification process. In different inpatient settings, a team of trained medical doctors administers the tapered dose that detoxes the body and lowers the chances of withdrawal symptoms.
  • Sober living homes at the residential rehab for dual diagnosis provide the clients a supportive housing environment and avoid relapse. These centers offer independence and support.
  • Next, the psychotherapy takes place at such treatment centers. Most importantly, cognitive behavioral therapy allows clients to learn how to change the thinking pattern.
  • Lastly, pharmacological treatment is also helpful for the mitigation of drug abuse disorder and mental issues. Certain medicines reduce the appearance of withdrawal symptoms and promote the recovery process.

4. Neurofeedback therapy 

It is a non-invasive therapy that helps patients alter their brain activity to enhance attention span and minimize impulsive behavior. While using neurofeedback technology, the therapy gives information about the individual’s brainwave actions that can create optimistic impacts on people’s behavior. This treatment approach can be highly beneficial for a wide range of individuals with a co-occurring disorder.

The setup for the therapy is simple. Some of the bio feed detectors are put on the scalp and ears of the patient. Then the client engages in some activity that helps to monitor the brain function.

5.    Holistic treatment program 

Although an ancient practice, yoga is now becoming the most famous form of physical exercise. It focuses on the spiritual and physical aspects of the practice. Typically, gym yoga focuses on the postures and asanas for physical strength and flexibility. However, yoga therapy for co-occurring disorders considers the meditative side of the practice.

Dual diagnosis treatment programs address the certain needs of the clients and allow them to practice trauma-sensitive exercises. Such exercises help them get rid of their trauma and control the feelings and thoughts.

Combining yoga therapy with other trauma-centered therapies such as CRM (Comprehensive Resource Model), Psychodrama, and EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing) provide great benefit. These therapies stimulate the parts of the brain which are associated with self-awareness. By this, yoga therapy eliminates the signs of traumatic stress. Yoga treatment is also beneficial as it creates mindfulness and struggles to heal the abnormalities in the body.

The benefits of yoga therapy are 

  • Lessens fatigue
  • Provide relief from anxiety
  • Improve strength
  • Self-empowerment
  • Promotes strength and flexibility

6.    Relapse prevention therapy 

With the right use of the tools, anyone can deal with the addiction and hold back the control of their lives. Most importantly, you must remember that to fight the chronic disorder of addiction, you must take proper steps and avoid relapse. The National Institute on drug abuse estimated that 40 to 60 percent of drug addict individuals show signs of relapse. The prevalence is similar to the individuals suffering from other chronic disorders like asthma, diabetes, or hypertension.

Relapse prevention therapy is made to help people defeat their addiction. The main purpose is to give individuals a specific set of skills to cope with relapse triggers.

7.    Experiential therapy 

Rather than traditional talk therapy, experiential therapy is highly beneficial. This therapy includes the actions and activities instead of only therapy sessions. It urges the individuals to identify their suppressed issues through physical actions like guided imagery or role-playing.

Key advantages of experiential therapy  

The key benefit of this therapy is that the people are involved in the sessions where therapy is not the main concern. In this whole new setting, the person experiences different feelings and emotions.

They behave in a more real-life manner. After yoga or other physical therapy, they share their experience with their therapist in a livelier environment. While the patient gets feedback from them, which helps them to handle the specific situation.

Other benefits of experiential therapy are

  • Problem-solving skills
  • Personal growth and development
  • Positive behavioral changes

Dual Diagnosis treatment programs in Arizona generally used in the very best substance abuse healing consist of:

Mental Health IOP
Anxiety Treatment Program
Dual Diagnosis Treatment Program
Depression Treatment Program
PTSD Treatment Program

In Conclusion

Today, medical professionals are fully aware that individuals should keep them away from mental diseases and drug abuse disorders. The dual diagnosis treatment center offers professional treatment for all issues. Once they diagnose the problem, they immediately start the treatment.

Someone with a dual diagnosis must seek treatment for both drug use disorder and mental illness. For effective treatment, you need to avoid the use of alcohol and other abusive substances. The behavioral, emotional, and social support can help you deal with the therapy’s day-to-day challenges.

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