Waco Dual Diagnosis Treatment (254) 577-3105

A dual diagnosis is a condition that occurs when a person experiences both a mental illness and a drug or alcohol problem. While a person with a dual diagnosis may technically have two separate illnesses, each condition affects the other. While drug rehabilitation programs used to solely focus on treating drug addiction, today dual diagnosis treatment in Waco involves addressing both conditions. By caring for the person with both the disorders they are experiencing, a person is more likely to experience greater results in sobriety as well as live better given their overall health.

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), an estimated 33 percent of people who have a mental illness also suffer from substance abuse addiction. These numbers go up for those who suffer from a severe mental illness, with an estimated 50 percent of people who struggle with substance abuse. Risk factors for dual diagnosis include being male, of a lower socioeconomic status, a military veteran, or having a history of several chronic medical illnesses. However, anyone can experience a dual diagnosis, just as anyone can benefit from dual diagnosis treatment programs.

Signs a person may be experiencing a dual diagnosis include the following:

  • Withdrawing from family and friends.
  • Engaging in risky behaviors, such as driving while intoxicated or getting into fights.
  • Having to use more and more of the drug to experience the same effects or to get through the day.
  • Displaying sudden behavioral changes, such as mood swings, paranoia, or withdrawing from friends and family.

Recognizing substance abuse in a person with mental illness can sometimes be difficult because a loved one is uncertain if the symptoms are due to the mental illness or something else.

Mental Health and Addiction -- Why Dual Diagnosis Treatment in Waco Assesses Both

Dual diagnosis and addiction can develop in several different patterns. Sometimes, a person may first have a mental illness and turn to substance abuse as a means to self-medicate. While drugs or alcohol may offer temporary relief or distraction from a mental illness, they are not a long-term solution to the problem. Other times, a person may abuse a substance and experience a mental illness as a result of their addiction.

According to NAMI, drugs and alcohol will worsen the symptoms associated with a mental illness. Because drugs are psychoactive substances that affect the brain, they can often result in a worsening of symptoms.

The presence of a dual diagnosis can make treatment programs in Waco more challenging, but not impossible. Inpatient treatment is usually recommended as a person can recover in a consistent environment free from the stresses and challenges of the outside world.

Types of Mental Health Disorders

Dual diagnosis can be a broad term because it encompasses a wide variety of mental illnesses as well as substances a person can be addicted to. Those who specialize in dual diagnosis treatment in Waco are familiar with treating a variety of mental illnesses through counseling, group therapies, and medications.

Examples of these mental illnesses include:

  • Bipolar disorder: This is a severe mental illness that causes a person to experience fluctuations in symptoms, from depression to mania, which is a heightened state of behavior.
  • Schizophrenia: Schizophrenia is another severe mental illness that causes a person to experience psychosis, or a loss of touch with reality.
  • Panic disorder: Panic disorder is a state of high anxiety that causes a person to have panic attacks, which are severe instances of panic that can make a person feel as if they are dying.
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD): OCD is a condition where a person experiences a repetitive thoughts and behaviors that causes a person to become fixated on. These thoughts can invade every aspect of a person's life, keeping them from feeling like they can leave their home.
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD): PTSD is a condition where a person has gone through a traumatic experience and may relive flashbacks and have feelings of depression and sadness related to the experience. A person may turn to drug and alcohol abuse as a means to escape these emotions.

Through participation in dual diagnosis treatment programs, a person can receive medical help for their mental illness and substance abuse addiction. These treatments can help a person receive treatment for their disorder in a healthy manner that does not involve drug abuse. There is hope via dual diagnosis rehab for those who experience both conditions. Call Waco Alcohol Rehab Centers for help (254) 577-3105.

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