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Dual Diagnosis, Co-occurring Disorder

What Is Dual Diagnosis Treatment?

Royal Life Centers focuses on wellness at the mental, physical, and spiritual levels. Our addiction treatment process always begins with an assessment and evaluation, where guests will be assessed for their symptoms of withdrawal and undergo a clinical evaluation for any possible co-occurring disorders. The term co-occurring disorders are treated through dual diagnosis treatment.

What Are Co-Occurring Disorders?

A guest with more than one disorder has a co-occurring disorder or a dual diagnosis. In addition to alcohol or substance use disorder, guests can have psychological or behavioral disorders. Major depressive disorder, anxiety disorder, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia are some of the many disorders in a dual diagnosis.

With the knowledge that many people suffering from substance abuse struggle with mental health disorders in tandem, we clinically evaluate guests upon arrival at our facilities and diagnose previously overlooked co-occurring disorders. In fact, in the 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, it was found that 7.9 million Americans suffered from a substance use disorder and mental disorder simultaneously. These high numbers are a result of inefficient mental health treatment leading to addiction. Often, people who struggle with a mental illness turn to drugs or alcohol in an attempt to cope with their disorder or “self-medicate” their dual diagnosis.

How Are Co-Occurring Disorders Treated?

Life can turn into a rollercoaster for people suffering from both substance abuse and mental disorders, or co-occurring disorders. For example, the extreme highs from drug use and mania, followed by extreme lows of a crash and depression can be detrimental to your well-being. That is why, to ensure a successful recovery from substance abuse, it is paramount to diagnose and treat our guest’s dual diagnosis.

It is important to remember that when a person decides to get sober, they still need to address the underlying mental health conditions of their co-occurring disorders. The anxiety, depression, PTSD, or other disorders that likely lead them to drug abuse require treatment. This is because, without treating both the substance use disorder and the mental health condition, the person cannot fully break free from their self-destructive behaviors. That is why, to ensure a successful recovery from substance abuse, it is paramount to diagnose and treat our guest’s dual diagnosis.

What is Dual Diagnosis Treatment? 

Dual diagnosis treatment provides coinciding medical care for substance use disorder and mental health disorder(s). Addiction is often driven by an underlying mental health disorder and requires dual diagnosis treatment. Additionally, it is not uncommon for mental health issues to be triggered by substance abuse disorders and subsequently worsened.

Until rather recently, medical professionals treated disorders of the mind entirely separate from addiction, disregarding the likelihood of co-occurring disorders when they involved substance use disorders. In fact, people suffering from both a mental health disorder and a substance use disorder were denied treatment for their mental illness— until they received addiction treatment. Without simultaneous treatment, the chances for successful recovery are cut down tremendously. Fortunately, today there is a long list of treatment facilities that offer dual diagnosis treatment because comorbidity is better understood; treating addiction and other disorders simultaneously are proven effective.

The Benefits of Dual Diagnosis Treatment Centers for Addiction Recovery

Dual diagnosis treatment centers are incredibly important in ensuring an effective recovery in people with other disorders alongside his or her substance abuse issues. These types of treatment centers combine the most successful aspects of substance abuse treatment and mental health treatment. Instead of seeing the conditions as two separate entities, dual diagnosis centers increase the chance of a successful recovery through the holistic treatment of both co-occurring disorders.

Each dual diagnosis facility offers different services and methods of treating a guest’s co-occurring disorders. No two centers are exactly the same, which can make finding the right treatment center a challenge. Due to the fact that every guest in treatment comes with a different background, addiction, mental illness, etc. there is no universal dual diagnosis treatment. Your specific mental disorder and substance use disorder may require intensive care, so it is important to find a center with customizable treatment options and experience in successfully targeting more than one disorder for a full recovery experience.

For your recovery to be effective, treatment must address your addictive behavior and mental health disorder simultaneously. The extent of your substance abuse and the severity of your mental health disorder should receive treatment. For this reason, you should only consider attending a treatment facility that provides customized treatment plans. Individualized treatment is the best way to ensure that your needs, circumstances, interests, and goals are taken into account to provide the best treatment for your dual diagnosis.

Mental Health Disorders and Addiction

Commonly, untreated mental health disorders lead to addiction and exasperate any pre-existing mental health disorders. Mental health disorders are conditions that disrupt mental health, your overall psychological well-being. It includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. Mental health impacts your ability to handle everyday life, communicate with others, and make choices. When your mental health is suffering, it’s important to seek help in order to regain psychological balance. Unfortunately, neglecting to treat mental health disorders often leads people to “self-medicate” with drugs or alcohol, paving the way to a co-occurring substance use disorder.

Do note, an individual can turn to substance abuse without presenting criteria for a mental health disorder.

Addiction rehabilitation centers that provide dual diagnosis treatment help you overcome your physical dependence on substances and address the underlying mental health conditions, to successfully treat co-occurring disorders.

Some common mental disorders include:

  • Depression
  • Schizophrenia
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Anxiety Disorder
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Personality Disorders
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
  • Eating Disorders

There is an undeniable connection between mental health disorders and addiction. According to the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, over 8 million adults who were 18+ years old (3.4 percent of all adults) suffered from both mental illness and substance use disorder in the past year. Many people struggling with a mental illness will use substances to “self-medicate” or take substances to find relief from their symptoms. On the other hand, substance abuse can cause or worsen already existing mental health issues. To get proper help, it is important for those struggling with substance abuse and mental disorders to seek out treatment from a facility that is able to treat both disorders.

Addressing Mental Illness in Addiction Treatment

Addressing mental illness and addiction separately is already a difficult task. However, addressing the two together can complicate things further in a setting without the knowledge, tools, and professionals— all factors that are within a dual diagnosis treatment center. Keep in mind, some addiction treatment facilities provide dual diagnosis treatment, however, some may only handle certain mental disorders with less severe symptoms. For example, some addiction treatment facilities may provide care for substance use disorder and depression but maybe ill-equipped for treating eating disorders. Alternatively, some addiction treatment centers may have a specialty in treating eating disorders and substance use disorders, but may not have the proper tools and protocols to handle schizophrenia. Each dual diagnosis treatment center will have differences, some may be a high enough level of care to provide treatment for all mental health and behavioral disorders, while others may not.

Treating Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Together

Treatment centers will have different approaches to treating mental health issues and substance use disorders. It is important to remember that not every treatment center will work for every person. Some therapies will work well for some and possibly be unsuccessful for others. Overall, a person regains control of their mental health and overcomes their substance abuse issues when they receive the proper care, and are vocal to a center’s clinicians about what is helpful for them.

There are many different types of treatments that are known to be effective in treating co-occurring disorders.

Treatments for Co-Occurring Disorders

  • Individual Therapy

Individual therapy—also known as psychotherapy or counseling— is a process that takes place between a trained therapist and someone struggling with mental health conditions and/or addiction. Done in a private setting, individuals work to explore their feelings, beliefs, or behaviors. With the help of their therapist, he or she can identify unhealthy thought patterns and begin to make positive changes in their life.

  • Group Therapy

Group therapy brings together two or more individuals who are struggling with the same or similar disorders. A group facilitator or therapist will lead discussions on topics that give group members a chance to explore their struggles with the support of peers. Group therapy allows individuals to see that they are not alone in their battle with addiction or mental health.

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

CBT is an effective form of talking therapy in which an individual learns behavioral management skills to combat the symptoms of their co-occurring disorders. CBT therapy sessions help individuals identify and modify unhealthy thought patterns and behaviors.

  • Recreational Therapy

Many treatment centers offer some form of recreational or activity therapy along with traditional therapies. There are countless benefits for physical and mental health to recreational activity, making it a valuable resource in addiction treatment. Beyond the positive effects on the mind and body, team activities promote a sense of community and togetherness.

Our Accommodations

Royal Life Centers provides the appropriate care for each guest, tailored to treat his or her co-occurring disorders with an individualized treatment plan. When developing a treatment plan for dually-diagnosed guests, we may tailor addiction treatment to include medication management (if applicable). We then place the guest under the direct care of a medical professional. Our treatment options work on a case-by-case basis, tailoring each guest’s treatment plan to their specific needs. Throughout our years of experience, Royal Life Centers is consistent in treating guests with mental and substance use disorders, all of who deserve care for their unique situation.

What Services Are in Dual Diagnosis Treatment

All of our dual diagnosis treatments address the underlying causes of both substance use disorder and mental health disorders. Our programs offer a custom approach—meeting guests wherever they are in their recovery. As a treatment provider, we believe each guest needs the best care possible for their individual needs, diagnoses, and goals. For this reason, we admit guests who we are confident in our ability to treat. In other words, we refer individuals with severe mental health symptoms or diagnoses to a higher level of care. 

After an initial assessment, our doctor reviews each case. After, our clinicians decide whether we provide the proper level of care and resources for each individual’s successful recovery. If you require additional care, our admissions team directs you to a dual diagnosis center that treats your dual diagnosis.

Services offered in our treatment program include:

  • Medical Detoxification
  • Residential Inpatient Treatment
  • Partial Hospitalization Program
  • Intensive Outpatient Program
  • Outpatient
  • Sober Living
  • Aftercare Services

Royal Life Centers provides integrative dual diagnosis treatment for both a guest’s substance use disorder and any co-occurring disorder. We address both issues, to promote a full recovery. Each guest collaborates with our clinical team and case manager to design a treatment plan that best suits their needs. The individualized nature of our addiction treatment allows for the best possible recovery from addiction and co-occurring disorders.

Co-occurring Disorders Treated in Rehab

Many of the same treatments used to treat substance use disorder are also used for some mental health conditions, so the logical next step is to treat co-occurring disorders together. In fact, the two are so similar, that most therapies address them simultaneously. That is why Royal Life Centers integrates dual diagnosis treatment through the entirety of our program. We believe that, in order to remove the addiction, treatment must identify, analyze, and treat all factors, especially mental health.

Of course, depending on the severity of the mental illness and the severity of the addiction determines the type of treatment they require. Although each case presents a unique set of circumstances, the most effective way to recover is by treating both disorders.

Mental Health Disorders Treated:

  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Depression Disorders
  • Bipolar Disorders
  • Trauma Disorders (PTSD)
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders (ADHD)

Royal Life Centers treats a variety of mental health disorders alongside substance use disorders. We recognize detoxing toxins from the body is the first step in healing your addiction, not the last step. Dual diagnosis treatment specialists will work alongside you throughout your stay within our treatment program to ensure that all of your needs are being met. 

It is important to note that not all mental disorders are treated within our dual diagnosis treatment. This being said, Royal Life Centers’ dual diagnosis treatment is not limited to the mental health disorders listed above. Knowing that many psychiatric disorders have person-to-person variance, we look at most co-occurring disorders on a case-by-case basis. We consider each prospective guest’s individual circumstances. For that reason, our facility’s medical director evaluates your past medical history and determines the potential risk factors.

What Mental Disorders Require Acute Care?

We never intend to exclude any prospective guests from receiving the addiction treatment they require; however, certain co-occurring disorders do not fall under the scope of our dual diagnosis treatment program. We preclude certain mental health disorders due to the associated violent symptoms that accompany the illnesses. Foundationally, the safety of our current guests and staff is paramount. In a similar fashion, mental health disorders requiring specialized medical care call for a center that appropriately treats their disorders.

Mental Health Disorders Excluded:

  • Schizophrenia 
  • Schizoaffective
  • Psychosis (excluding drug-induced psychosis)
  • Eating disorders

Undoubtedly, certain co-occurring disorders are understandably more difficult to treat than others. For instance, some personality disorders, such as schizoaffective disorder, require the level of care in an inpatient mental health facility. In fact, co-occurring disorders involving psychosis (excluding drug-induced psychosis) and schizophrenia require the care of psychiatrists with specialized practices in treating psychotic disorders. 

Additionally, eating disorders, such as anorexia and bulimia, are incredibly dangerous and life-threatening. Although we provide emotional, medical, and nutritional aid within our dual diagnosis treatment to reinvigorate our guest’s lives, eating disorders require intense hands-on care at a specialized rehab for eating disorders.    

Above all, Royal Life Centers dedicates its time to provide you with the addiction treatment services you need. For that reason, our admissions specialist can point you in the direction of our outreach provider that can point you in the right direction to speak the help you need for dual diagnosis treatment.

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