Dual diagnosis is reference for those individuals that have drug or alcohol dependency along with mental or psychological disorders co-existing at the same time. It is challenging to treat patients with co-occurring disorders because the drug addiction can worsen the psychological problem and vice versa, which makes it difficult to ascertain and treat the individual. With over 12 million people diagnosed with psychological illness and have issues with drugs or alcohol, the statistics are alarming.
The most common 8 psychological disorders that have been evaluated in individuals are Borderline Personality Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome, Panic Anxiety Disorder, Eating Disorders, Bipolar Disorder, Depression and Schizophrenia. The sad fact remains that it is difficult to diagnose whether the mental illness caused substance abuse or the substance abuse led to a mental disorder. Thus, in most cases, one of the two reasons masks the real issues leading to dual diagnosis.
Facts and statistics about dual diagnosis
The need for integrated treatment for dual diagnosis is more than ever especially after the startling statistics:
- 33.3% individuals suffering from metal or psychological illnesses suffer with alcohol or drug addiction.
- Nearly 50% people with substance issues problem have a mental disorder to compound the problem of addiction.
- Over 40% individuals addicted to alcohol for over 4-5 years have a coexisting psychological illness.
- People with dual diagnosis are at a higher risk of suicides as compared to those just struggling with an addiction or psychological illness.
To be on the path of recovery and living a drug-free life, people with dual diagnosis need to enter rehab facility where both addiction and the mental illness can be evaluated and assessed by medical professionals and treatment accordingly. The deadly nexus of coexistence of the mental illness and dependency on drugs needs to be broken and understood before the individual can be skillfully treated for both the issues. Thus, treatment of the addiction without considering the accompanying mental disorder will not work. Both the addiction and mental disorder need to be treated together.
Aggressive and Behavioral Issues
Aggressive and Behavioral Issues Individuals with dual diagnosis have higher chances becoming aggressive and have violent outbursts. Thus, many of the people have criminal backgrounds and are in prison. This limits the scope of improvement and treatment. Most of the people with mental disorders tend to medicate themselves with drugs or alcohol as an escape mechanism as they are unable to cope with the psychological limitations.
As the treatment for dual diagnosis is complicated, not all of the drug treatment and recovery facilities are to provide optimized solutions. Thus, it is important to seek out treatment through reputed institutions.