dual diagnosis intervention

What is a Dual Diagnosis Intervention?

Addiction rarely occurs in a vacuum. In fact, it often develops alongside other mental health concerns, such as anxiety, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder. A person dealing with psychiatric issues and a substance use disorder at the same time is said to have a dual diagnosis. Symptoms of these disorders can overlap, meaning that a tailored dual diagnosis intervention is required to begin a person’s journey to recovery. Today on the blog, we will discuss co-occurring conditions and the process of staging a dual diagnosis intervention.

Why Do These Issues Co-Occur?

Any instance of dual diagnosis is a complex situation. For years, researchers have speculated about which comes first: a substance use disorder or mental disorder. The answer is complicated. Either of these conditions may develop first, and they may worsen each other over time. Some people may begin abusing drugs and alcohol to cope with symptoms of their mental illness; for example, they may drink to assuage persistent worry or use drugs in an attempt to battle symptoms of post-traumatic stress. Others may develop symptoms of mental illness after years of ongoing substance use.

Common dual diagnosis conditions include:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Panic disorder
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Schizophrenia
  • Social anxiety
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder

Dual Diagnosis: Two Connected Problems

Dual diagnosis can be challenging to identify. Symptoms of mental illness and substance use may overlap or mask one another. However, it is vital for both of these concerns to be addressed at the same time.

Treating addiction without coming to terms with underlying issues, such as mental illness, jeopardizes one’s recovery in the long run. Additionally, it is not sufficient for dual diagnosis patients to seek treatment for their mental health concerns alone. Without replacing the destructive behavioral patterns created by addiction, it is almost certain that relapse will occur.

Integrated treatment is the gold standard for dual diagnosis patients. This comprehensive approach to care is rooted in individualized treatment: a plan of care which considers each aspects of a person’s personal history, experiences, substance use, and psychiatric diagnoses. Integrated treatment is provided at one facility, eliminating the need for communication between agencies and streamlining the patient’s recovery. Family education should also be included to provide support and understanding for the patient’s loved ones. Through an evidence-based approach, it is possible to recover from addiction and manage the symptoms of one’s mental illness. In order to get started, a dual diagnosis intervention is often required.

Intervention for Dual Diagnosis

If you have a loved one who is battling addiction and mental illness, a professional intervention is an excellent first step to healing. Working with a facilitator can help you to deal with any outbursts or denial that crops up over the course of an intervention. An experienced professional has seen it all; they will work to keep the conversation on track.

Sometimes, people with a dual diagnosis will resist treatment for one or both of their issues. They may not see what their mental illness has to do with their substance use, or vice versa. A trained interventionist can help you to navigate this phase of a dual diagnosis intervention, convincing your loved one that simultaneous treatment of both problems is the best way forward.

At Whitman Recovery Service, we understand that these situations can be nerve-racking and anxiety-inducing. We provide a tailored approach that takes each person’s state of mind into account, helping you and your loved one to feel safe, cared for, and understood during the intervention. Knowing that emotions can run high during these meetings helps us to defuse any potentially hostile, tense, or stressful situations, channeling them into a positive direction. Don’t let your concerns stop you from getting help. It’s the perfect time to arrange a dual diagnosis intervention.

Recovery Is Possible. We’re Here to Help.

Rich Whitman has over thirty years of experience in the field of addiction treatment. When helping families and friends prepare for a successful intervention, he brings a stability and a practical approach which characterize his services. These qualities have resulted in a success rate exceeding ninety percent; Rich has also received awards recognizing outstanding assistance in intervention. When you need help reaching a loved one who is dealing with a dual diagnosis, contact Whitman Recovery Service. We’re here for you every step of the way.