Dual Diagnosis/Co-occuring disorder treatment is a relatively new innovation in the field of addiction recovery. Until the 1990s, people who were experiencing symptoms of a mental health disorder — anxiety, panic attacks, depressive episodes, delusional behavior or mood swings — were treated separately from those who sought help for drug or alcohol abuse. When these conditions overlapped, clients were often denied treatment for a mental illness until they got clean and sober. Unfortunately, because substance abuse is often driven by an underlying psychiatric disorder, this meant that many people with a Dual Diagnosis of addiction and a mental disorder never got the help they needed.
What’s Different About Dual Diagnosis Therapy?
In the 21st century, Dual Diagnosis recovery blends the most successful aspects of mental health care and substance abuse treatment.
Instead of drawing a hard line between psychiatric health and addiction, these areas are treated as part of a continuum. Clinicians who work in addiction treatment can now receive training and credentials in the treatment of co-occurring mental health disorders. Dedicated rehab facilities offer recovery services that are personalized for clients with a Dual Diagnosis.
To increase your chances of achieving a full recovery, your care should include:
- Parallel treatment of your mental health and substance use disorders by the members of a highly trained treatment team
- Acknowledgement of the importance of psychotherapeutic medications, such as antidepressants or anti-anxiety meds, in the treatment of co-occurring disorders
- A supportive approach to therapy that reinforces self-esteem and builds self-confidence instead of confronting the client with negative, aggressive statements
- An inclusive treatment strategy that brings partners, spouses, children and other household members into therapy for individual counseling, group meetings or education.
Certified Drug and Alcohol Counselor (CADC)
As a CADC, as well as being trained and licensed as an LISW, I bring to the table the education and experience help bridge the gap in therapy. I am not a treatment center, but our sessions will address both the mental health and addictive aspect of your challenges.