Dual Diagnosis Treatment: Treating Addiction & Mental Health

What is Dual Diagnosis?

Dual diagnosis treatment is necessary when a person struggles with co-occuring disorders – a simultaneously existing mental health or physical disorder paired with an alcohol or drug addiction. People who struggle with alcohol or substance use disorders may also struggle with disorders including depression, bipolar disorder, trauma, anxiety, or personality disorders without their knowledge. Over time, the lack of treatment for one condition can exacerbate the other.

Mental health disorders have unpleasant symptoms, and individuals use alcohol and drugs to self-medicate the disorder because they offer temporary relief from psychological symptoms. However, it makes the mental health issue worse in the long run. Significant distress in an occupation, relationships, finances, and physical health are common in those who have a dual diagnosis. The lack of stability in mood combined with substance use makes it almost impossible to gain control of life. This is why a dual diagnosis should be addressed simultaneously for both the mental health issue and addiction.

Our Dual Diagnosis Treatment Center

Our dual diagnosis treatment centers have expert staff available to regularly monitor the progress of individuals. Each member of our multidisciplinary team participates in the creation of a unique treatment plan. Lakeview Health’s board-certified doctors make every attempt to use non-addictive medications for mental health symptoms. Our board-certified psychiatrists will work with you to ensure prescribed medications are properly administered and helping with mental health symptoms.

Dual Diagnosis Program

Lakeview Health’s multidisciplinary treatment team offers programs customized to fit each person’s physical, emotional, and spiritual needs.

Lakeview Health’s Dual Diagnosis Program Offers:

  • Medication management
  • Mood stabilization and continued monitoring by licensed physicians
  • Relapse prevention techniques for addiction
  • Education on coping skills for managing mental health disorders
  • Resolution of underlying issues contributing to dual diagnosis
  • Counseling with family or significant others to increase awareness about dual diagnosis

Doctors, therapists, and nurses work with you, from initial admission to discharge, on an aftercare plan to reduce the risk of re-hospitalizations, additional legal and financial problems, homelessness, suicide, violence, sexual and physical victimization, incarceration, or the development or worsening of serious illness.

Everyone dealing with dual diagnosis – both individuals and loved ones – should understand the importance of mental health medications. Even if you feel better and symptoms have decreased, you cannot stop taking your medications because it increases the risk of a substance use relapse. If you feel like you want to stop your medication, make sure to consult your psychiatrist first.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment Benefits

Dealing with an addiction is always difficult, but those who struggle with more than one issue may find themselves in a uniquely challenging situation. Rehabilitation and recovery from two or more factors, whether that includes drugs, alcohol, prescription medications or a mental illness, requires a custom program. A dual-diagnosis treatment program helps high-risk individuals achieve sobriety and break free from their addictions.

Addressing the Role of Mental Illness in Addiction

A substantial number of individuals who opt to enroll in a dual-diagnosis treatment program struggle with both an addiction and a mental illness or disorder. We know that to fully heal, we must address the psychological aspects of addiction as well as the physiological side. It is widely recognized that mood disorders and mental illnesses increase a person’s vulnerability to addiction. In some cases, drugs may be used as a way to self-medicate. Therefore, it is vital that people struggling with these issues are able to participate in a dual diagnosis treatment program that identifies, recognizes, and appreciates the role of mental illness in addiction.

Dual-Diagnosis Treatment Programs Look at Recovery Comprehensively

Lakeview Health looks at recovery comprehensively. Full recovery means not just pausing drugs or alcohol for a specific period, but adopting a lifestyle where drug use is not a temptation as a result of undiagnosed or misidentified mental illnesses.

A thorough dual-diagnosis treatment program is beneficial because it gives you the tools needed to have a lasting recovery. For instance, when depression, anxiety, or panic attacks hit, you will know what you are dealing with because our staff will provide education on identifying the symptoms. Therapists equip you with techniques and tips to handle these psychological side effects, which in turn can reduce the need and desire for drug or alcohol use.

Medications are Prescribed with Addictive Behavior in Mind

A dual-diagnosis treatment program is so vital for some people in regards to prescription medications. Depending on the opioid or substance use disorder in each case, opioids or prescription medications are a major concern and a potential hurdle toward sobriety. However, in a dual diagnosis program, medical professionals are aware of the risks and concerns of prescription medications in the treatment of mental illnesses and disorders. They understand which medications are risky for those who have struggled with drugs or alcohol, and they are cognizant of dosage, increased reliance, and signs of a potential relapse.

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