Addiction to drugs and alcohol is a mental illness. Like depression or bipolar disorder, addiction is a disease of imbalanced brain chemicals that can wreak havoc on a person's life and relationships. The relationship between addiction and other mental illnesses is so intertwined, 8.4 million Americans were found to have co-occurring mental and substance abuse disorders. Shreveport inpatient detox centers understands the importance of diagnosing and treating all the mental health issues that their patients face, which is why dual diagnosis plays a key role in the drug treatment programs in Shreveport substance abuse centers.
Having two illnesses at one time is called comorbity, and there are varying rates of comorbity between different substance abuses and mental illnesses. Alcoholism is one of the most studied addictions in relation to comorbid ailments, and studies show an alarming pattern between the addiction and other behavioral disorders.
Despite extensive research on the subject, the exact cause of comorbidity between addiction and mental illness is unknown. In fact, it is often difficult to determine which illness brought about the other in an individual – if that is even the case. There are several schools of thought surrounding the disorders' relationship, the first of which being that drug abuse can cause the development of some mental illnesses. For instance, addiction to a substance often leads to a distress and difficulty in a person's relationships and professional circumstances, which then leads to depression and anxiety as they lose control of their life. A second scenario considered by mental health researchers is that mental illnesses increase the likelihood of illicit drug use as a coping mechanism, or even as an attempt to self-medicate. An example of this would be drinking to lessen the symptoms of anxiety. The third viewpoint is a neurological observation that addiction and other mental illnesses are associated with shared factors like imbalanced brain chemistry or deficits, genetic susceptibility, and exposure to traumatic experiences. All three of these scenarios are taken into consideration in Shreveport inpatient detox centers to better treat an individual with a dual diagnosis.
Either before or after a medical detox (depending on the state of the patient), doctors specializing in dual diagnosis perform a full psychological evaluation to determine the mental health needs of a patient. Any underlying mental illness needs to be treated in order to successfully recover from addiction. Depending on the illness, medication can be helpful to correct any chemical or hormonal imbalances at play in a second mental illness, but therapy is typically the first line of defense. At Shreveport substance abuse centers, treatment programs are specially created to address the unique needs of each individual. A mental health counselor works with an addiction specialist to create drug treatment programs that specifically tackle the circumstances and details associated with different mental illnesses' impact on an addiction.
Because of the range of mental illness than can affect addicts and the complexity of the illnesses' interplay with specific drug or alcohol addictions, specific treatments for you or your loved one are determined by Shreveport inpatient detox centers' staff, but there are several commonly included therapies.
In these daily individual meetings, you and your therapy specialist will explore the life events and emotions surrounding your addiction and mental illness, how they affect each other, and more. These conversations also focus on helping you learn to recognize your triggers and develop constructive coping techniques.
While staying in Shreveport substance abuse centers, you and your peers will be encouraged to take part in group meetings to share your experiences, thoughts, and feelings about your addictions and mental health. These exchanges help you to process your recovery experience while creating bonds with others who share your goal of sobriety and health.
Addiction is a heavy enough burden without the added weight of a second mental illness. Shreveport detox centers are there to help addicts uncover and treat the illnesses holding them back from recovery and sobriety through dual diagnosis. For more information on dual diagnosis or other details about alcohol and drug treatment programs, reach out to Shreveport inpatient detox centers today through their website or 24 hour addiction helpline at (318) 550-3059.