Substance abuse is common with people who have a mental illness. According to the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), alcohol, cocaine, and cigarettes, are the primary substances abused by people with varying mental conditions.
Similarly, it has been observed that certain substances can cause the abuser to show signs of mental illness. Mental illnesses are caused by some factors such as genetics, the environment, amongst other things. If an abuser has an underlying risk, the continuous abuse of these substances can eventually trigger mental illness.
Stopping the Vicious Circle
There is undoubtedly a correlation between drug abuse and mental illnesses. When abusers continue to abuse substances, the underlying mental illness gets worse with time. Similarly, mental illnesses will get worse with continued use of substance abuse.
Dual diagnosis treatment centers are necessary if these overlapping issues are to be addressed. Most abusers perceive substance abuse as a relief to their problems. Alcohol is often abused by patients with anxiety or depression. Patients with schizophrenia have the highest rate of alcohol and tobacco abuse. Clinical trials have shown that the rate of smoking amongst schizophrenic patients is as high as 90%.
People with mental illnesses self-medicate with these substances. Therefore, it is only natural for them to continue taking that trajectory unless treated. Unfortunately, this aggravates the problem in the long run and leads to a vicious circle of increasing substance abuse and a worsening mental condition. Dual diagnosis treatment is necessary to stop this cycle.
It is important that both of the co-occurring disorders be treated to avoid a relapse. Either of the two conditions can occur independently. On the other hand, they can also be interlinked because of underlying factors such as genetics, environment trauma, etc.
Furthermore, since the two are interdependent, treating one condition will be akin to treating the symptom and not the actual cause of the problem. For example, alcohol is a substance that is often abused by people with depression. Therefore, treating depression without treating alcoholism is most probably going to be temporary and vice versa. Therefore a relapse is imminent, and dual diagnosis treatment can help address the issue sufficiently.
A closer look at how co-occurring conditions develop can help to shed light as to why there is a need for dual diagnosis treatment centers. According to a study by NIDA (National Institute on Drug Abuse), mental disorders can lead to an impairment of the brain systems. This, in turn, leaves some people prone to substance abuse. In turn, continued misuse of these substances also worsens the cognitive impairment of the brain.
Importance of Inpatient Dual Diagnosis Treatment Centers
Rehabilitation programs for co-occurring conditions can be divided into two categories; inpatient and outpatient care. Some participants who join these programs may benefit from outpatient care, while others need inpatient treatment to address their co-occurring conditions sufficiently.
One of the reasons a patient may be required to take the inpatient programs is because they need a more intensive approach. Through inpatient treatment, group therapy and monitoring of the patient is possible. Group therapy helps patients to gain new perspectives and gain news insights of their situation.
Some of the inpatient centers are located in buildings that may be disguised as hotels or resorts. This provides the privacy that is important for some patients to feel more comfortable in the new environment. Furthermore, inpatient care provides a new environment where participants can work towards getting better since environmental factors are part of the underlying causes of substance abuse and in effect mental illnesses. It is for these reasons that inpatient centers are considered to be the best treatment for co-occurring conditions.