What are co-occurring disorders? A disorder of this type is one that results in one having a substance abuse disorder as well as a mental health disorder. This is commonly called dual diagnosis. These types of disorders are actually very common among those seeking treatment in either an addiction treatment program or a mental health setting. We have seen that the vast majority of patients coming into our treatment center with an addiction also suffer with a mental health disorder such as depression or bipolar disorder.
What causes Co-occurring Disorders?
Research suggests that some cases of dual diagnosis are related to genetics, however not all cases are caused by genetics. Scientists cannot fully explain why a mental health disorder occurs, however there are theories that suggest that stress and the biological vulnerability in a person work together and attribute to the symptoms of mental disorders.
Biological vulnerability refers to how easily one will develop a specific condition. Everyone is born with, or acquires the skill, early in their life. There are things that can affect a person in this manner even in the womb, potentially the result of drug use during pregnancy.
It has been determined that those with mental health disorders are more biologically sensitive to the effects of substances or may use these substances as a means of coping with situations in their life. Those with a mental health disorder are twice as likely to develop an addiction as well.
Effective Treatment of the Disorder
A person suffering with an addiction goes to a rehab center. One with a mental health disorder finds their treatment through a specialized mental health center. So what happens when one has both disorders that must be treated at the same time? A co-occurring facility must be found. This facility has the means of treating both disorders together so that the most effective treatment results are found. Integrated treatment, as it is known, can provide the foundation for lifelong recovery from addiction as well as the never-ending struggle of a mental disorder. There are many services that are provided in a dual diagnosis recovery center to help, ranging from counseling and therapy to medications and more. Peer support is offered. After care services, case management and individual counseling are also offered.
These disorders are more common than you may have realized before. If you or someone that you love is suffering with co-occurring disorders, finding help is a call or click away to a specialized treatment facility. New Directions for Women is Orange County’s oldest women only addiction treatment rehab, and has been exclusively serving women since 1977. If you know someone who needs treatment, contact us online at Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or at 800-93-WOMEN. We can help.