Signs and Symptoms of a Dual Diagnosis

What Is Dual Diagnosis?

Dual diagnosis treatment involves treatment for both an underlying mental health disorder as well as an addiction. During dual diagnosis treatment, the patient will be first treated for their co-occurring condition to form a solid foundation for recovery. Once the patient is stabilized psychologically, they will move on to attend drug or alcohol addiction treatment. 

Having two medical conditions can be challenging to manage, as the underlying mental health disorder often exacerbates substance abuse. To suppress the signs and symptoms of a dual diagnosis, these individuals often abuse substances to lessen the side effects they are experiencing. Unfortunately, this is not the appropriate method to manage the disorders, and the most effective way to do so is through a qualified dual diagnosis program. 

If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction, call WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab today at 877.969.1993 to learn how we can help.

Common Co-Occurring Mental Health Disorders

Close to half of those who struggle with a drug or alcohol addiction also face an underlying mental health disorder. This can often be the root cause and ultimate driving force behind the addiction. When an individual struggles with both, medication assisted treatment (MAT) can help stabilize the patient on a psychological level to go ahead and seek treatment for their substance abuse. The most common co-occurring mental health disorders that are present with a substance use disorder (SUD) are:

  • Generalized anxiety disorder
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Eating disorders
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Schizophrenia
  • Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)

A recovery plan that works to provide safe and effective dual diagnosis treatment will ensure that the patient is being treated for their alcohol and drug abuse through addiction treatment while also being treated for the underlying mental health condition. WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab offers all levels of care and a full continuum of treatment options, including dual diagnosis treatment. We have helped thousands of individuals who struggle with mental illness and addiction, and we can help you too. 

Warning Signs of Dual Diagnosis

It’s essential that if you suspect a loved one is struggling with more than just substance abuse problems, you look out for common signs and symptoms of underlying mental illness. Often, those struggling with an underlying condition cannot pinpoint or identify themselves that they do, indeed, have a problem that is more than just substance abuse. If you suspect that you or someone close to you is struggling with comorbidity, there are several signs and symptoms of a dual diagnosis to look out for. 

Some of the common signs include:

  • Feeling generally unfulfilled and unhappy when you are not under the influence of drugs or alcohol 
  • You abuse drugs or alcohol to suppress feelings of stress, anxiety, and fear
  • You leverage the effects of substances to numb past pain or trauma
  • There is a pattern of mental illness in the family

Some symptoms of dual diagnosis include:

  • Withdrawing from friends and social gatherings
  • Changes in appetite
  • Insomnia
  • Experiencing hallucinations
  • Extreme shifts in energy and mood
  • Uses alcohol and drugs to cope with symptoms
  • Lack of concentration and low attention span
  • Displaying angry and violent behavior

If an individual is struggling with an underlying mental health disorder that is at the root causes of the addiction, it’s imperative to recovery that they seek dual diagnosis treatment. 

Dual Diagnosis Treatment at WhiteSands 

The substance abuse and mental health specialists at WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab will conduct an in-depth patient assessment to determine the best type of dual diagnosis treatment for you. Clinicians will look at the family history of mental illness and addiction as well as the medical history of the individual to help develop the most effective treatment plan for them. 

If you have attended addiction treatment in the past and relapsed or felt as though the core problem was not brought to the forefront, you may have a co-occurring disorder. If left unaddressed, this underlying disorder will continue to fuel your addiction and vice versa. The only way to become stabilized is through dual diagnosis treatment.

Get in touch with an intake specialist at WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab today and learn how our drug addiction programs can help you overcome and manage your comorbidity. During your call, we can discuss the signs and symptoms of a dual diagnosis and how our addiction treatment programs can help.

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

Jackie has been involved in the substance abuse and addiction treatment sector for over five years and this is something that she is truly eager about. She has a passion for writing and continuously works to create informative pieces that not only educate and inform the public about the disease of addiction but also provide solutions for those who struggle with drug and alcohol abuse.