Centers for addiction and mental illness treatment in Miami offer rehab programs that are dedicated to helping patients with coexisting disorders. Coexisting disorders, also called dual diagnosis or comorbidity, are relatively common in substance abuse treatment. In research into comorbidity, questions about whether substance abuse leads to mental illness or mental illness leads to substance abuse are often asked in a “chicken and egg” conundrum. It’s very likely that both are right.
Some of the more common coexisting disorders are substance abuse and depression and anxiety. This combines the most prevalent mental illnesses together, explaining why they’re often comorbid. Substance abuse disorder is one of the most common disorders diagnosed as are depression and anxiety, so their coexistence is no surprise.
About Coexisting Disorders
Lesser known common co-existing disorders include schizophrenia and substance abuse. It is not unusual for a schizophrenic (diagnosed or not) to turn to alcohol or drugs for relief. This quickly leads to addiction, of course, which eventually exacerbates many of the symptoms of schizophrenia rather than helping. It’s believed that as many as 47 percent of those with schizophrenia also have a substance abuse problem. Another common and similar disorder is bipolar, co-existing with drug or alcohol abuse. Often for the same reasons.
On the other hand, sometimes the after-effects and long-term effects of substance abuse can lead to mental illness. These common coexisting disorders are not unusual in recovered addicts who relapse due to the damage heavy substance abuse did to their brain chemistry or structure. Methamphetamine users who are not treated early, for example, may lose brain matter and some of the vital connections necessary for some normal function, leading to symptoms not unlike dementia.
The National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that 17.5 percent of adults diagnosed with a mental illness also have coexisting substance abuse disorders. Nearly 8 million people, the survey estimates, have these common dual diagnosis at any given time. In Canada, rates are often higher.
Despite these numbers, it’s rare for a patient seeking help with a mental illness or substance abuse problem to be treated for common coexisting disorders they may have. The National Institutes of Health says that less than five percent of those with coexisting disorders actually receive treatment for both addiction and mental illness over the long term.
Miami dual diagnosis treatment identifies both disorders and treats both simultaneously. After treatment is complete, patients are encouraged to attend a local Alcoholics Anonymous (http://aamiamidade.org/) or Narcotics Anonymous (http://namiami.org/) meeting. Don’t wait to seek help. Call relapse prevention centers in Miami today!
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