The Importance of Treating Both Disorders in Dual Diagnosis Patients
By Alice Munday
Integrated treatment is essential for treating the millions of people who are suffering from mental health and substance use disorders. A few years ago, each of these disorders was treated in different health facilities as experts considered that they are not closely related. As such, individuals who suffered from severe psychiatric conditions such as bipolar and obsessive-compulsive disorders hardly received treatment for their addiction, and drug rehab graduates barely received adequate care for their underlying mental illnesses. However, the situation has changed today as integrated treatment has become incredibly popular due to its many outstanding benefits.
Ensures Easy Decision Making
When a team of addiction and mental health experts treats the two disorders, their different services are integrated, and that ensures effective decision making. The person suffering from co-occurring disorders enjoys the benefits of having one treatment plan and one relapse plan. The patient also has intensive one-on-one sessions with the experts, and, in each session, the client has his or her addictive disorder and psychiatric condition fully addressed. The two conditions should also be simultaneously treated as they are closely related. In many cases, underlying mental illnesses cause addictions. As such, treating both disorders in the patients helps to eliminate the need for extensive consultations across different agencies and brings experts with proper credentials in their respective fields in some room to address all the needs of the patients. The one-on-one sessions and enhanced coordination have a direct impact on decision making.
Mitigates Health Risks
Before individuals who abuse drugs or substances get fully prepared to stop the harmful practice, they are in most cases ready to take some specific small actions to reduce the detrimental effect of the abuse. Whenever these people make some progress, they get motivated to take more bold steps to control their mental health and substance disorders. People with co-occurring disorders need to the motivation as the individuals often face the risk of death whenever they are not helped in time to address the adverse consequences of their condition. For that matter, treating the disorders helps to mitigate several deadly health risks.
Guarantees Timely Medication
Proper management of the symptoms of mental health problems such as anxiety, schizophrenia, depression, and manic-depression disorder requires the help of modern pharmacopeia. And since medication is widely accepted in dual diagnosis treatment, an integrated approach gives people with co-occurring disorders an opportunity to get proper medications at the right time and undergo essential therapies as well. Treating the two health condition simultaneously, for that matter, ensures diseases that require medical attention are taken care of before they cause unbearable harm to the patient.
Provides Group Therapy
Dual diagnosis treatment requires mutual support groups to actively participate in the recovery process, which helps to deal with the symptoms of social anxiety and depression that mental illness and addiction often cause or exacerbate. So, integrated treatment can help restore the individuals’ sense of self-worth within a short time.
Meets Multiple Needs of Patients
People who are suffering from co-occurring disorders have lots of needs. The patients have unique preferences, values, and needs, and the unique attributes influence their decisions and objectives. Interventions that focus on only one of the disorders cannot meet the multiple needs. Therefore, an integrated approach that is tailored to the meet the unique needs of each of these individuals is an excellent intervention for ensuring a speedy recovery.
The integrated approach meets a variety of needs of dual diagnosis patients, making it the best option for treating both mental illnesses and addiction concurrently. However, for the one-one sessions to be fruitful, the specialists should have the right qualifications. The approach ensures that patients can receive treatment for the two disorders in one setting and addresses all the underlying mental problems at the right time to avoid preventable complications, which is an effective way to quicken complete recovery.
If you or someone you know needs to seek treatment for a mental health disorder and/or substance use disorder, it’s essential that you seek treatment at a qualified treatment center.
Alice Munday is a freelance writer from Virginia Beach, Virginia. In recovery herself, she is dedicated to helping those who struggle with addiction.