One of the most common complications to the treatment of addiction is co-occurring disorders. Co-occurring disorders, which is also termed dual-diagnosis, is a situation where an individual has a substance abuse disorder and another mental illness.
Clients who present with co-occurring mental disorders are common. Mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, OCD, bipolar disorder and others often cause people to use drugs or Alcohol as a crutch to deal with symptoms of their disorder and life in general.
Equally common, the frequent and repeated use of mood and mind-altering substances can cause the development or an increase in symptoms of such mental illnesses.
Depression, for instance, is the most common disorder and can cause or be caused by the use of drugs and Alcohol. Depression is a serious and potentially fatal disease that often pushes sufferers to alleviated their symptoms by self-medicating with substances. These substances, by nature, cause depression symptoms and long-term use can cause permanent or long-term depression.
People with co-occurring disorders must address both the substance abuse and the other mental illness in order to recover from either. One mental illness will affect the other and without proper treatment of both, there is a diminished chance of recovering one’s health or control over use.