Powered by Vagaro Salon SoftwareSpa Software & Fitness Software

Unraveling Co-Occurring Disorders: Understanding the Intersection of Addiction and Mental Health

If you are addicted to drugs, alcohol, or other substances, you may feel you’ll never be able to regain your sobriety. However, there are programs designed to treat your addiction and the underlying causes, such as anxiety, depression, or other mental health issues. These can be described as co-occurring disorders. Keep reading to learn more!

An Overview of Co-Occurring Disorders

If a person has a mental health issue as well as a dependency on drugs or alcohol, it is referred to as a dual diagnosis or co-occurring disorders. Unless you are treated for your anxiety, depression, or underlying issues, it is much harder to help you get and stay sober. This is because you may turn to drugs or alcohol the next time you’re terrified to get out of bed or drive your car to work. People, places, or days of the week may also be triggers you won’t be able to face sober unless you identify and address them.

The Connection Between Mental Illness and Addiction

There is a strong link between mental health issues and addiction. It’s not uncommon for individuals to use marijuana or drink alcohol to lower their inhibitions. Using drugs or alcohol may also be a trauma response for those who have been physically or sexually abused as children. This may be true whether the abuse came from a parent, a teacher, or a peer. Individuals sometimes become addicted to drugs or alcohol because they simply have an addictive personality.

See also  The Importance of Whole-Body Wellness in Recovery

How Can Co-Occurrings Disorder Be Identified?

Perhaps the easiest way to identify mental health issues is to speak with your physician if something feels off. For instance, getting stomach cramps whenever you go to school may be a sign of anxiety. If you constantly feel as if your peers don’t like you, it may be a sign of depression as opposed to some conspiracy to ensure that you spend your life alone.

Your doctor may refer you to a therapist or to other professionals who may be able to help. Alternatively, it is possible to join online support groups or find other online resources to help obtain a diagnosis. Of course, it’s worth noting that the internet cannot give you an accurate diagnosis and that you should see a doctor before creating your own treatment plan.

The Causes and Risk Factors for Co-occurring Disorders

Your environment may be why you are addicted to drugs or alcohol and the cause of your depression, anxiety, or related conditions. For instance, if your parents get mad at you after scoring a 99% on a test instead of getting a perfect score, that might cause anxiety.

If your teachers, bosses, or other authority figures say that you don’t have any potential to be successful, that might result in depression or other mental health issues. Of course, there is also a chance that you are genetically predisposed to expecting nothing less than perfection from yourself.

Therefore, even if your parents, teachers, or colleagues praise your work, you may not be able to see the value it provides. Consequently, you may turn to pills or drugs like cocaine that might enable you to stay up for days on end to outwork the competition. Of course, all this is likely to do is cause burnout and exasperate your issues with addiction.

See also  EMDR and Brain Health

Treatment Approaches for Co-Occurring Disorders

Individual or group therapy may help you learn more about your triggers and how to handle them. Group sessions may help you to see that you’re not the only one struggling with dependency and that there is no shame in admitting that you need help.

You may also be encouraged to spend more time outdoors meditating or participating in other activities to clear your mind of negative thoughts. Medication may also be available to help with chemical imbalances that might be causing mental health issues. Medication may also help ease withdrawal symptoms, minimizing your odds of a relapse during the first hours or days of sobriety.

If you are looking for a comprehensive approach to recovery from dependency and a treatment plan for your co-occurring disorders, you’ll likely find what you’re looking for at Mind Body Wellness. We offer a variety of treatment options designed to help with both the physical and mental aspects of your dependency and your journey to sobriety. You can visit our website to learn more about how we can help and how to get started on the road to a sober lifestyle.