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Co-Occurring Disorders, Dual Diagnosis

Co-Occurring Disorders, Dual Diagnosis

What is the definition of Co-Occurring Disorders?

According to the National Association of Mental Illness (NAMI), approximately 37 percent of individuals with alcoholism and 53 percent of individuals with drug addiction have at least one serious mental illness. The term Co-Occurring disorders, previously known as Dual Diagnosis, refers specifically to when a person is dealing with both mental health and addiction issues at the same time. For some individuals, there is more than one mental health issue, like depression and anxiety, to deal with. For others, there is more than one addiction, like both alcohol and an illegal drug, to deal with.

It is not possible to accurately determine if an individual is dealing with a dual diagnosis situation unless and until the addiction has been addressed.

Generally, the diagnostic process is as follows:

  1. The person must become aware of the effects their addiction is having on their life.
  2. Detox from the substance, if that is the addiction.
  3. Undergo a thorough physical exam by a competent physician. This may include a battery of diagnostic tests to rule out any physical condition that could cause the symptoms.
  4. If a physical condition is contributing to an emotional condition, the physical condition must be treated before anyone spends time and attention on mental health diagnoses.
  5. Participate fully in a psychological (or psychiatric) evaluation by an appropriate mental health professional.

Once the co-occurring disorders are addressed, an individual can receive treatment for both conditions at the same time in the same place. Northeast Addictions Treatment Center treats co-occurring disorders by:

  1. Anyone can see the MD on staff upon entry into our facility to get correct medical care for co-occurring cases.
  2. Initial assessment determines the length of treatment necessary, then is further assessed through progress, and not just dictated by insurance.
  3. We address the needs of the whole person through evidence-based therapies, because being whole again is what matters at NEATC.
  4. We are capable of treating co-occurring disorders for consistent, compassionate, and well-rounded care for all individuals with dynamic complexities.

Knowing what to expect from your co-occurring treatment plan is security, and you’ll be pleasantly surprised with our approach.