What is Dual Diagnosis?

Dual diagnosis refers to the co-occurrence of substance use disorder and a mental health disorder, such as anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and more. Dual diagnosis can take various forms depending on the specific addiction and mental health disorder. Substance abuse can mask symptoms, making diagnosing underlying mental health disorders challenging until the addiction is treated. Individuals with a dual diagnosis may struggle with maintaining relationships, social withdrawal, isolation, and difficulty expressing emotions. These issues can intensify the symptoms of both the mental illness and substance use disorder. Active addiction can also reduce the likelihood of receiving adequate medical care, which increases the risk of severe medical complications, early death, and violent acts.

There were 7.6 million LGBTQIA+ adults affected by substance use disorders or mental health disorders in 2019, and only 7.4% of treatment programs offered specialized services to them.

Signs and Symptoms of a Dual Diagnosis

Signs of problematic behaviors that may indicate a mental health and substance use disorder or dual diagnosis may include the following:
Dual diagnosis recovery can be challenging as it involves two distinct conditions that require treatment. It is essential to seek specialized addiction and mental health treatment to address substance use disorder first and then get appropriate treatment for the mental health disorder(s). This approach allows individuals to manage their conditions more effectively and achieve lasting recovery.

What are Co-Occurring Disorders?

Co-occurring disorders and dual diagnoses both involve the occurrence of two or more health problems simultaneously. However, co-occurring disorders involve mental health conditions that either result from or contribute to the addiction.
Sometimes, substance abuse can cause changes in the brain, leading to the development of a co-occurring disorder. Mental illnesses often come with symptoms that can disrupt a person’s daily life. As a way to alleviate these symptoms, some individuals may turn to drugs or alcohol. While this may provide temporary relief, it can also lead to substance abuse disorders when the person is unable to manage their mental health symptoms effectively.
Managing co-occurring disorders alongside substance abuse can pose a distinctive challenge requiring a specialized approach. However, integrated treatment from a dual diagnosis rehab has demonstrated promising results for attaining long-term recovery. By using a combination of therapy, medication, and support, individuals have a greater chance of acquiring the tools and skills necessary to maintain a healthy and fulfilling life.

Our Dual Diagnosis Treatment Centers

STR Behavioral Health treatment teams have extensive experience in treating individuals who suffer from dual diagnosis. Clients receive personalized treatment that targets both their substance use disorder and co-occurring mental health disorder. We focus on treating the substance use disorder first so that we can address the underlying mental health disorder more effectively. Our treatment programs are designed to help individuals with a range of mental health conditions, including anxiety, depression, borderline personality disorder, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia.

We assist clients with their dual diagnosis and help them realize they are not alone in their struggles. We also focus on empowering our clients to challenge the shame they may feel, which often leads them to believe that there is something inherently wrong with them. During the treatment program, clients interact with their peers and learn that although they may use different coping mechanisms, the underlying reasons for their need to manage are often quite similar.

At STR Behavioral Health, we offer the following dual diagnosis treatment programs, which incorporate individualized, holistic, and restorative support throughout each level of care:

Clients struggling with a dual diagnosis are welcomed to our home-like treatment centers. We take the stress and complications out of the treatment and recovery process so that our clients can focus solely on healing.

STR Behavioral Health Services

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