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What is Dual Diagnosis Treatment
What is dual diagnosis treatment? This is a specialized type of substance abuse treatment that addresses both the drug abuse and another co-existing health condition. This is typically a mental disorder, such as anxiety, depression, bipolar disease, PTSD and OCD, although the scope of dual diagnosis treatment is certainly not limited to just those examples. Dual diagnosis treatment for chronic pain is also becoming increasingly more common. Some people who begin opioid treatment for legitimate chronic pain become addicted to their prescribed opioid. This is partly a function of how opioids work in the brain and partly because of individual risk factors, such as genetics. Genes play a pivotal role in the chances of someone becoming addicted to a substance.
Opioids, Chronic Pain and Addiction
This is not to say that all people who take opioids become addicted. In fact, under proper medical supervision, most do not. But, perhaps as many as one-quarter do, and these are the individuals who can benefit from dual diagnosis drug treatment. All drug rehabs will discourage the regular use of opioids for any reason, even for chronic pain. As part of dual diagnosis treatment, they will attempt to find alternatives. This could be holistic therapy, such as yoga or meditation, certain non-addictive medications like pregabalin or celecoxib or behavioral modification therapy. Some of these include Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Dialectical Behavior Therapy. Of course, most rehabs include some type of behavioral modification therapy for all clients, not just for dual diagnosis ones.
People get into trouble with opioid abuse when they begin to use the drug to self-medicate for reasons other than which the drug was prescribed. They may use opioids as a mood elevator, when their true problem is untreated depression. This kind of self-medication does nothing to address the underlying problem that may be fueling the addiction in the first place. Self-medication almost always makes the problem worse.
However, there is a distinction between physical dependence and addiction. They are not the same. Anyone who takes an opioid for any length of time will develop a tolerance and a physical dependence on it. They will require higher doses and will experience withdrawal symptoms if the drug is suddenly stopped.
This is also true for addiction, but the difference lies in the psychological aspect. An addict has come to rely on their drug of choice as a coping mechanism that they rely on to get through every day. A non-addict sees the drug only as a way to relieve their pain and are highly unlikely to display drug-seeking behavior. Someone who is addicted will be unable to reduce their dose on their own. Someone who is not will be easily able to reduce their dose any time they desire to.
Dual Diagnosis Treatment for Depression
Depression is a fairly common brain disorder. It’s often mistaken for just the blues, but clinical depression is more than that. Everyone feels down sometimes; it’s part of life. Perhaps a relationship didn’t work out, or you lost your job. It would be normal for someone to feel a bit depressed under those circumstances. However, this type of depression is self-limited and generally clears up relatively quickly without treatment. True clinical depression is caused by an imbalance of a brain chemical called serotonin. Medications called SSRIs, or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, help to balance this chemical by increasing the amount of serotonin available to the brain cells. Once the depression is relieved, it will be much easier for someone to concentrate on their substance abuse recovery. Some people can discontinue SSRI therapy without recurrent symptoms. Others may need it for much longer or even permanently.
Dual Diagnosis: Substance Abuse and Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder used to be called manic depression. It typically causes wild swings of emotions from very high to very low. The high phase often includes euphoria and boundless energy. In the low phase, someone can sink so deep into a black depression that they may commit suicide. Some people with this condition don’t realize they have it and attempt to medicate their symptoms with drugs of abuse that only make the problem worse. Bipolar disorder can be successfully treated with mood-stabilizing drugs like lithium. Whatever the concurrent health condition, long-term sobriety is unlikely unless and until it’s successfully treated.
We Can Help
Dual diagnosis therapy is a specialized type of drug rehab not necessarily offered at all drug rehabs you may want to attend. If you need help choosing the best dual diagnosis treatment center for you, just call us anytime at 833-820-3812. Our professional staff of drug counselors will be happy to discuss your issues and guide you to the help you need.
OUTPATIENT RECOVERY PROGRAMS
There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to addiction. Every person is unique and deserves the proper placement in the right program to best avoid potential relapse. Our “Phase Back to Life” outpatient programs combine the love, care, compassion and structure of a traditional rehabilitation center – along with a real life recovery program. We know you just want your loved one back and some peace of mind. That’s exactly how we designed our program. Call us today to learn more.
Our well-appointed facilities will ensure that your loved one is comfortable and safe. We have taken great care to ensure that each individual feels at home from the start, so they are ready to engage in a life of recovery. We have thought of everything to make sure it’s all taken care of.
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