Understanding a Dual Diagnosis

Understanding a Dual Diagnosis

If a mental health professional has told you that you have a dual diagnosis, you may want to learn more about what that means for you. A dual diagnosis, which is also called a co-occurring disorder, describes when someone has both a mental illness and an addictive disorder at the same time.

Dual diagnoses happen more frequently than you might expect. Of the 21 million people in the U.S. who suffer from addiction, 8 million also have some form of mental illness.

How Are Mental Health and Addiction Disorders Linked?

While mental health conditions such as depression and PTSD may not lead directly to addictive behavior, there is a connection between the two. Adults with mental illnesses are more prone to developing an addiction if they turn to specific substances or behaviors as a coping strategy.

If you have a mental health issue, you may not view your addictive behavior as a disorder. However, an addiction can magnify the symptoms of mental illness. And as a mental illness progresses in severity, the likelihood of a person misusing substances or engaging in behavior such as compulsive gambling will sharply increase.

What You Can Do for Your Dual Diagnosis

As individual diseases, addiction and mental illness are challenging to overcome. When taken together, they’re even more difficult. However, if you’ve received a diagnosis of a co-occurring disorder, you should never assume help is out of your reach. Treatment is available for you to reclaim your life and make a fresh start.

At New Found Life, our options include both individual and group therapy, 12-step immersion, psychiatric care and a residential program. We offer a holistic approach to healing that allows all our clients to establish a solid basis for long-term recovery and provides them with the wherewithal to develop life skills and assertiveness in a constructive and caring environment.

Our goal is to help you realize the possibilities of living a fulfilling, happy life free from drugs and alcohol. If you or a loved one is struggling with a dual diagnosis, let New Found Life help you make a full recovery. Our admissions staff is here to help 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Reach out to our California treatment center today.