Mental Illness and It’s Effect on Addiction

How One Affects the Other

Those who struggle with an underlying mental illness are 50 percent more likely to struggle with addiction. Conversely, those who chronically abuse drugs or alcohol are more likely to adopt a mental illness. Those who are addicted to drugs or alcohol are much more likely to struggle with higher anxiety levels and moodiness as their brain chemistry to in an altered state. Close to 9 million individuals across the nation struggling for both an addiction as well as a mental health disorder; a combination that requires the help of dual diagnosis treatment in order to successfully recover from.

When an individual struggles with an underlying mental health disorder as well as an addiction, it takes intense treatment in order to overcome. First, the mental illness must be treated as this is the foundation of the issue at hand. Once the individual is stabilized and in a right mental state, the addiction will then be conquered. Depending on the type of addiction as well as the severity of it, inpatient or outpatient treatment programs will be recommended.

Drugs That Affect Mental Health

There are a number of drugs that have the capacity to hinder the state of your mental health. Sometimes, these effects are irreversible which is why individuals should never indulge in substances of abuse; even one time can change your entire life. Some of the drugs that have been proven to take a toll on your mental health are:

  • LSD
  • Inhalants
  • Steroids
  • Cocaine
  • MDMA
  • Meth
  • Stimulant drugs

If you are experimenting with these mind-altering drugs, the effects may be detrimental to your mental health. The outcomes are not worth it and your mental health is at risk each and every time that you use. In addition, the lifestyle that these drugs result in is one that can put your life in extreme danger and can even be life-threatening.

Seeking Help

Unfortunately, there is often a negative stigma around mental health which prevents these individuals from seeking help. In turn, they may turn to drugs and alcohol as a means to cope with their symptoms and struggles. Self-medicating yourself is never the right answer, as this can lead you down a very dangerous road of addiction and substance abuse. Seeking the proper counseling, therapy, and mediations for your mental illness will aid in getting you back to feeling ‘norma’ so that you can carry on your life as it was meant to be. Getting the right help will also allow you to be in the right frame of mind to make conscientious decisions.

There are many types of dual diagnosis programs for those struggling with a co-occurring disorder. Searching for the one that will help you is imperative to your wellbeing and your overall health. If your mental health and addiction do not get the treatment that they require, they have the potential to continue to worsen the longer that help is put off.

Once a patient evaluation has been completed it will be determined which sort of treatment program will be best for you.


If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.

About the Author

is a proud alumni member of WhiteSands Treatment. After living a life of chaos, destruction and constant let downs, Mark was able to make a complete turnaround that sparked a new way of life. He is serious about his recovery along with helping others. At WhiteSands Treatment, we offer support to you in your homes or when you are out living in your daily lives.