Mental health issues and addiction are an unfortunate yet common combination in America today. Many different mental disorders increase the likelihood of addiction and lead people to dual diagnosis treatment centers in Florida. Mental health and addiction is a complicated problem that no one deserves to battle on their own. At Chapel Hill Detox, we offer programs catered to co-occurring disorders and proven methods to free our clients from addiction.
What is Dual Diagnosis?
A dual diagnosis is a condition characterized by two mental illnesses occurring simultaneously. Dual diagnosis, also called co-occurring disorders, typically involves addiction and a mental health disorder. Many individuals suffering from a substance use disorder (SUD) use substances to cope with their existing mental health issues.
Research shows just less than half of individuals with an addiction have a comorbid disorder or co-occurring disorder. Physical addiction plays a role in dual diagnosis, but it is not entirely responsible for an individual’s substance use habits. Underlying mental health disorders sometimes lead people to self-medicate with different substances. At Chapel Hill Detox, we offer treatment designed for our dual diagnosis clients.
Signs and Symptoms
Mental illnesses commonly have distinct symptoms. Dual diagnosis may be difficult to spot without knowing some of the physical and emotional signs and symptoms.
Signs of Dual Diagnosis
- Difficulty quitting alcohol or drugs
- Developing a tolerance to certain substances
- Lying about substance use or other illegal behaviors
- Guilt following compulsive behaviors
- Quitting hobbies to participate in new unhealthy activities
Physical Symptoms of Dual Diagnosis
- Drastic change in energy levels and mood
- Spending less and less time with family and friends
- Losing motivation and interest in hobbies or activities you enjoy
- More than two weeks of feeling hopeless or worthless
- Having mood swings that affect friendships, relationships, or your job
- Relieving anxiety by following specific rituals
Common Co-Occurring Disorders
Many disorders are linked to addiction. When an individual doesn’t seek help for their existing mental condition, they may turn to substances to either numb or cope with their existing condition symptoms. It’s essential to understand how these disorders can affect your mental health. Specialized treatment is highly beneficial in these circumstances as both the existing condition and addiction must be treated simultaneously. Some common mental issues that lead to or co-exist with addiction include:
About 10% of Americans deal with depression. It’s a common mental health disorder treated in most dual diagnosis treatment centers. Depression is an overwhelming disorder that leads many to use substances to cope with their symptoms. Unfortunately, self-medication makes the situation worse rather than treating its root cause.
Signs and Symptoms of Depression
- Weight changes and loss of appetite
- Lack of concentration
- Feelings of uselessness, pessimism, and hopelessness
- Loss of interest in hobbies, work, or goals
Anxiety comes in many forms, and each individual experiences symptoms differently. There are many different symptoms and signs related to anxiety. Most people will experience a state of anxiety within their life.
These feelings can come from different scenarios like stressful activities, issues at work, or making important decisions. Having a diagnosed anxiety disorder is different, though. Individuals with an anxiety disorder tend to live with anxiousness every day as it affects most aspects of their lives.
Signs and Symptoms
- Drastic life changes to avoid fear
- A decline in the quality of work regarding work or school
- Inability to avoid concern or fear in day to day life
- New impulsive behaviors, usually shown in unhealthy coping methods
Bipolar disorders typically involve drastic mood changes. Symptoms of bipolar disorder are similar to those of addiction; therefore, it’s difficult to diagnose. The relationship between addiction and bipolar disorder is not entirely understood. More than half of people that struggle with bipolar disorder have a substance use history.
Types of Bipolar Episodes
- Manic episodes: During a manic episode, the individual may be overly hostile or cheerful for a week or longer.
- Hypomanic episodes: These episodes are the same as manic episodes, just less severe and lasting for only a few days.
- Major depressive episodes: Lasting for an extended time, depressive episodes include severe depression and lack of interest in any activity.
- Mixed episodes: These episodes involve different characteristics of other bipolar symptoms occurring at the same time.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
PTSD is caused by traumatic or violent experiences including, but not limited to car accidents, military combat, or sexual abuse. After an individual experiences trauma, they will likely show signs of PTSD. To be diagnosed with it, though, they must have symptoms for an extended time. Many patients in dual diagnosis treatment centers suffer from both PTSD and addiction. Research shows that PTSD sets people at a much higher chance to suffer from addiction.
Signs and Symptoms
It’s not uncommon for symptoms of PTSD to develop months or even years after a traumatic event. Symptoms do sometimes occur directly after an event, though. Severe post-traumatic stress makes it difficult for the brain to know the difference between memories and the present. This is why many people diagnosed with PTSD suffer from flashbacks, violent dreams, and overwhelming or frightening thoughts.
PTSD can also affect an individual’s cognition and mood. Some symptoms may cause an individual to have feelings of anger, guilt, or blame about the world or themself.
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
OCD typically begins to express its symptoms in people’s teens or early 20s. This age sector also happens to be when people start experimenting with alcohol or different substances. Researchers believe that OCD and addiction commonly co-occur since the age range is similar.
Common Signs and Symptoms of OCD:
- Extreme fear of losing control
- Fear of germs, dirt, or other contaminants
- Extremist moral or religious ideologies
- Constant fear of being unprepared
OCD involves uncomfortable compulsions and obsessions that lead people to substances as a break from their symptoms. At dual diagnosis treatment centers like Chapel Hill, OCD is treated and evaluated to find each individual’s best addiction recovery path.
Schizophrenia is a mental disorder that makes it difficult for the brain to distinguish imaginary from reality. About half of people who have schizophrenia suffer from addiction. Contrary to popular belief, multiple personality disorders and schizophrenia are different. People who have multiple personality disorders, or MPD, express violent behaviors and show multiple personalities. However, individuals with schizophrenia are not usually violent or have multiple personalities.
Common Symptoms and Effects of Schizophrenia:
- Delusions or delusional thinking
- Catatonic or trancelike behavior
Treatment for Dual Diagnosis
Co-occurring disorders are best treated together. Each aspect of a person’s mental issues must be taken into account to treat them successfully. Dual diagnosis is a complicated subject and at Chapel Hill Detox, we use proven and specialized therapies to treat our clients. When treating a dual diagnosis, it is vital to provide unique therapies catered to the individual and their particular circumstance. Before our clients begin therapy and treatment, they participate in medical detox.
Medical detox is one of the first steps of treatment and one of the most important. A proper medical detox sets the foundation for recovery for our clients. Detox is often dangerous and should not be done alone. We offer a detox program that medical experts guide. Medical professionals are necessary to deal with the withdrawal symptoms that occur with most substances. Some substance withdrawal symptoms are more severe than others. We use techniques to make this process as comfortable as possible.
After a successful detox, our clients continue the road to recovery. Clients can expect to use several therapeutic methods to tend to their co-occurring disorders.
Individual therapy is an essential tool in treatment. Therapists utilize talk therapy to discuss their patient’s challenges, emotions, and behavior. One-on-one therapy is vital during dual diagnosis treatment. Individual therapy allows the patient to have a better understanding of themself and their addiction.
Group therapy is an incredibly valuable tool in treating co-occurring disorders. This form of therapy usually involves a group of two or more individuals and a licensed therapist. Group therapy is designed for participants to gather and understand their peers’ emotions, struggles, perspectives, and experiences. In treatment, each individual is unique, but they are in there for similar reasons. Group therapy helps develop each member’s interpersonal growth by using new skills and coping mechanisms in a real-world setting.
Holistic therapy is an emerging alternative form of treatment. Practices in this mode of therapy focus on the mind and body of its participants. Its main goal is to heal the root causes of symptoms and triggers of an individual’s co-occurring disorders. Holistic treatments may include:
- Acupuncture and massage
- Recreational and exercise therapy
- Nutritional therapy
Many of our clients find that holistic therapy works best when paired with other forms of traditional treatment. The blending of therapies gives our clients the tools they need for a successful and long-term recovery.
Family therapy helps our clients and their families heal from the damage caused by their loved one’s past and current behaviors. These sessions consist of a licensed therapist, the person in treatment, and their family. The therapist will work with each family member to help set healthy boundaries with their loved one. They will also help to rebuild trust within the family.
Get Help Today at Chapel Hill Detox
Getting on the path to recovery is an essential but challenging part of obtaining good mental health and sobriety. The road to recovery is long, but at Chapel Hill Detox, we strive to provide all the tools and resources one will need for a long-lasting recovery. Our dual diagnosis treatment center aspires to bring our clients peace by breaking down their addiction. If you are seeking a dual diagnosis treatment center in Florida, please contact us today.