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What is Dual Diagnosis?

When a new client is admitted to Prominence Treatment Center, their condition might not have a straightforward, singular diagnosis. The individual might be suffering from dual disorders, which might be why recovery from addiction has been so difficult. But because Prominence’s Non 12-Step Rehab program takes a holistic approach, we’re able to make dual diagnoses to properly treat our clients.

Dual diagnosis is the term to describe an individual with more than one mental disorder. Having more than one diagnosis requires special medical and psychological treatment. Each disorder needs to be treated individually, but each disorder treatment has a direct affect on the other’s diagnosis and outcome.

Dual Diagnosis
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Mental Disorder and Substance Abuse

Mental disorders play a critical role in substance abuse. Researchers have found that nearly half of the individuals who suffer from a mental illness also are addicted to some type of substance. Typical examples of disorders that are dually diagnosed are depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD).

When mental disorders are not medically diagnosed, individuals might take matters into their own hands. Self-medication is a major factor between mental disorders and substance abuse. Depression, anxiety, bi-polar, and PTSD all inflict a considerable amount of emotional pain to individuals. Feeling that pain, day in and day out can be draining. Afraid to go see a doctor, people turn to drugs and alcohol to alleviate their pain. The only way they know how to dull or eliminate their pain is to escape it with a synthetic high. This continual cycle of self-medication is often what leads to substance abuse.

Differentiating Between Pre-Existing Conditions and Substance-Induced Conditions

Substance abuse can blur the lines between pre-existing mental disorders and substance-induced psychiatric syndromes. But, they are both treatable. The mental health problems triggered by drugs and alcohol can be treated as long as there is a prolonged abstinence from the substance. Likewise, pre-existing mental health issues can be managed, whereas ignoring these issues can continue to do damage. Whether the individual is suffering from a pre-existing condition or a substance-induced condition, it’s important to find proper medical professionals who can correctly made the appropriate assessment before recommending any sort of treatment.

The Importance of Dual Diagnosis

The Importance of Dual Diagnosis
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Treating an addiction is always an upward battle, but it’s even more difficult when you’re not treating the proper disorder(s). That’s why a comprehensive evaluation upon arrival to a substance abuse treatment center is so vital. By thoroughly understanding the individual and what causes their addiction, experts and caretakers alike are able to make the correct diagnosis and see the individual through the best, most appropriate treatment. Only treating one addiction, when in fact there are two, can be frustrating for the individual. If a client is following all the steps to recovery, but not seeing results due to a misdiagnosis, it can set back an individual’s willingness to continue substance abuse treatment. Making the proper diagnosis the first time is imperative to long term recovery.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment

Treating dual diagnoses is difficult because many psychiatric centers are not equipped to handle individuals with a substance abuse problem. And because the two treatments need to be integrated with one another, it is in the best interest of the patient that treatment is managed at one location. Dual diagnosis treatment is a marathon, not a sprint. It’s important to the recovery process if individuals remember this going into treatment. A healthier and more realistic outlook coupled with the correct diagnosis will lead to greater success.

Prominence Treatment Center has the capabilities to work with individuals who suffer from mental illness as well as substance abuse. Under our ideology of holistic treatment, we look to heal the mind and body when helping our clients. Treating the physical symptoms is not enough. We seek to discover why these addictions are present and focus on how we can address the issues that are causing the addiction. We have the rare combination of psychiatric help and substance abuse training, a singularity that positions Prominence Treatment Center perfectly for dual diagnosis.

If your addiction treatment program is not working for you, or if you believe that you may be suffering from dual diagnosis, please reach out to one of our representatives to further discuss your situation. Call us at 877-323-2284; we’re here to help.

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