A National Directory of Drug Treatment Centers and Alcohol Treatment Centers, Therapists and Specialists. A free, simple directory providing assistance and guidance for those seeking help regarding alcohol addiction, drug addiction, dependency and many other conditions that affect the mind, body and soul.
Call 888-647-0579 to speak with an alcohol or drug abuse counselor.

Who Answers?

Understanding Dual Diagnosis

When two mental disorders or illnesses occur at the same time, or in sequence, in the same person, it is known as comorbidity; when these conditions are diagnosed, it is called a dual diagnosis.

Mental disorders are defined by the National Institute on Drug Abuse as “A mental condition marked primarily by sufficient disorganization of personality, mind, and emotions to seriously impair the normal psychological or behavioral functioning of the individual.” Dual diagnosis recognizes substance abuse disorder as a co-occurring mental disorder with other mental disorders or illnesses and there is a high prevalence of comorbidity between the conditions.

The Prevalence of Substance Abuse and Illnesses

Often, people who enter treatment for substance abuse, have recognizable symptoms of illness such as infections, diseases, cardiovascular problems, respiratory problems, fatigue, malnutrition, or diabetes. The exposure to abusive substances may have been a result of these illnesses, through prescription medications or attempt to self medicate for relief, or the illnesses may have occurred because of the substance abuse. Dual diagnosis of these conditions can be complicated and requires addressing both issues at the same time in order to be effective.

The Prevalence of Substance Abuse and Mental Disorders

substance abuse and mental health

Comorbidity requires an integrated treatment approach.

Research shows that many people who suffer from a mental disorder also have a substance abuse disorder and vice versa, although one may not be the cause of the other, even if it appeared first. There are many reasons why these disorders overlap although the causes of each may be difficult to establish.

Substance abuse disorders often cause mental disorders because the mind has been altered from the abuse. Repeat use of some substances can seriously damage the brain and central nervous system to the point that the person suffers psychosis, schizophrenia, hallucinations, deliriums, anxiety disorders, panic disorders, depression, and suicidal or harmful tendencies, along with many other psychological issues.

Mental health disorders can affect reasoning and judgment, leading to substance abuse and individuals with mental disorders such as depression, anxiety, or post traumatic stress disorder, will often use or abuse substances to relieve their symptoms. Individuals suffering from other psychiatric disorders may be vulnerable to substances due to biological issues, brain deficits, or other exposures to stress and trauma such as domestic violence, abuse, or neglect.

Under a dual diagnosis, the treatment of both the substance abuse disorder and the mental disorder in continuum is necessary to promote stability, decrease vulnerabilities, prevent relapse, and control the effects that one may have on the other or prevent the effects from worsening.

More Treatment & Detox Articles

Personal intervention can cut binge drinking

A new study from The University of Texas School of Public Health has found that brief and personal intervention can significantly reduce drinking among risky college drinkers. The researchers found that motivational interviewing with feedback (MIF) significantly reduced drinking among a group of heavy-drinking college students. The MIF intervention includes a personalized feedback profile and….

Continue reading

Methadone clinic’s biggest headache is misperceptions

Methadone overdose

Calgary facility on move for third time since 2003 Lisa Jovetic isn’t the kind of woman who often comes to mind when people grumble about drug addicts. The once happily married mother of two and self-described “goody-goody” got hooked on drugs nearly five years ago after she was hospitalized for pneumonia and contracted a superbug…..

Continue reading

Good news, bad news about teen drinking

Aaron Holsinger said he doesn’t like telling his tragic tale, but he really has no choice. Holsinger, now 28, was convicted of negligent homicide after his girlfriend, Gina Erickson, died in a 2001 drunken-driving accident. He was driving the car. He spent six months in jail, will be on probation until he is 41 and….

Continue reading

A risky drug plan

Eight years ago, Californians approved Proposition 36, which was designed to send drug offenders into treatment instead of prison. Proposition 5, on the Nov. 4 ballot, would take this concept a step further. Many prosecutors and judges who deal with drug-related crime make a compelling case that this measure goes too far – and would….

Continue reading

Where do calls go?

Calls to numbers on a specific treatment center listing will be routed to that treatment center. Calls to any general helpline will be answered or returned by one of the treatment providers listed, each of which is a paid advertiser.

By calling the helpline you agree to the terms of use. We do not receive any commission or fee that is dependent upon which treatment provider a caller chooses. There is no obligation to enter treatment.

I NEED TO TALK TO SOMEONE NOWI NEED TO TALK TO SOMEONE NOW 888-647-0579Response time about 1 min | Response rate 100%
Who Answers?