Dual diagnosis treatment is a program that treats addiction and a co-occurring mental health disorder at the same time. This treatment option is in contrast to the historical norm, sequential treatment. In sequential treatment, patients received treatment for only their addiction before a treatment program addressed a co-occurring disorder such as depression. Unfortunately, that method results in much higher relapse rates due to how mental health and addiction influence each other. Contact us at 866.796.4720 to learn more about dual diagnosis treatment in Florida.
Mental Health and Addiction
Co-occurring disorders are when at least one mental health disorder overlaps with an addiction. This confluence of issues makes a dual diagnosis treatment program vital for achieving an addiction-free, mentally healthy lifestyle. Mental health disorders and addiction generally create a negative spiral of influence, where each can intensify the other, making healing from either affliction tricky.
While any mental health disorder can occur alongside an addiction, research has identified some of the most common. These include:
- Anxiety disorders
- Eating disorders
- Mood disorders, such as depression
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
Something to keep in mind regarding mental health and addiction is their particular prevalence in young adulthood, predominantly from ages 18-25. One reason for this is that young adulthood is a period of continual physical and mental development. Not only does this developmental period mean young adults are more susceptible to substance abuse, but substance abuse in those years leaves people much more likely to struggle with substance abuse later in life. For instance, research has found that the occurrence of bipolar disorder in adolescents increases the risk for substance use disorder in adulthood compared to if the bipolar disorder’s onset occurred in adulthood.
Dual Diagnosis Treatments
The most common type of dual diagnosis treatment is called integrated treatment. Integrated treatment aims to address addiction and a mental health disorder simultaneously. Typically, integrated treatment plans are comprised of a combination of the following:
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy
- Dialectical behavior therapy
- Contingency management
- Motivational enhancement
- Mutual-support groups
Another thing that sets integrated treatment programs apart is their ability to be implemented in both inpatient and outpatient settings. The following sections explore two categories of techniques used in the integrated approach in more detail: behavioral therapies and motivational strategies.
Two therapies common to dual diagnosis treatment are cognitive-behavioral therapy and dialectical behavior therapy. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is when a therapist works with a patient to examine the beliefs and mindsets that underlie their actions and behaviors. After identifying these beliefs, the therapist guides the patient through therapy sessions to alter these beliefs to result in more positive behaviors.
Dialectical behavior therapy is a type of therapy used to treat personality disorders by reducing negative behaviors that make recovery from addiction more difficult. These behaviors might include self-harm, suicidal actions, or substance abuse.
Two pieces that often fall under an integrated treatment plan are contingency management and motivational enhancement. Both use incentives to produce behavioral adjustments from a patient. Contingency management is when a program offers incentives for patients when they remain sober for periods of time or avoid negative behaviors.
Motivational enhancements are similar to contingency management in being incentive-based. However, they deliver rewards earlier in a treatment program to support and encourage patients to make positive decisions and lifestyle changes as part of the recovery process.
Contact BoardPrep Recovery Center®
BoardPrep Recovery Center® in Tampa, Florida, specializes in dual diagnosis treatment that prioritizes an individualized approach. Our addiction and mental health recovery programs are grounded in decades of research and hands-on experience. We work with each patient to address their unique needs. In addition, we support them in achieving sobriety and transformative mental health outcomes. Learn more about our approach to mental health and addiction by calling 866.796.4720, or contact us online.