People who are suffering from drug and substance abuse or addiction as well as emotional and mental disorders may be given a dual diagnosis. Dual diagnosis refers to people who may have mental or behavioral difficulties, or perhaps developmental disabilities, combined with a pattern of substance abuse. Programs are being developed to help people who are suffering from this combination of disorders and who need specialized treatment involving a spectrum of therapies.
Integrated Treatment Programs
It is important to bear in mind that not all rehab centers offer dual diagnosis programs, as drug rehab facilities may not have the expertise to deal with patients with underlying psychiatric problems or cognitive disabilities. For this reason, it can be essential for those with dual diagnosis to take the time to look for a center that offers integrated treatment programs to help them deal with emotional and physical needs when it comes to drug addiction.
Traditional Treatment Versus Dual Diagnosis Programs
Dual diagnosis treatment has a number of benefits: While traditional drug abuse rehabilitation is equipped to treat substance abuse, it leaves the underlying depression or anxiety or other disorder untreated. A dual diagnosis treatment addresses psychiatric issues as well as the problem of substance abuse. Earlier treatment methods left patients stranded between different approaches, being overseen by disparate groups of professionals who may not have had the resources to coordinate their activities.
About Concomitant Disorders
People who have dual diagnosis show symptoms related to depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, hallucination, panic attacks, eating disorders, and schizophrenia. The main aim of dual diagnosis programs is to help these individuals lead a normal life that is free of drugs. They are meant to help individuals who are desperately in need of help to overcome the challenges of living with a mental health problem without making matters more complicated by becoming involved in drug abuse.
How Dual Diagnosis Treatment Works
Before entering a dual diagnosis treatment program, the patient will be assessed by a team of professional medical practitioners, psychiatrists and therapists. Depending on the degree of substance abuse, this team may recommend an integrated series of procedures including hospitalization, detoxification and inpatient treatment, or suggest outpatient treatment with counseling and therapy, perhaps combined with life skills coaching and support in finding suitable employment. A case manager will provide follow up, and once recovery is achieved, the patient will have access to long-term after-care addiction programs.
Having adequate long-term support can be essential for those with dual diagnosis in helping to prevent relapse, educating them about the effects of drug abuse in their particular circumstances, providing opportunities for life-skills training, and fostering healthy self-esteem.