Co-occurring disorders treatment: What to expect

Extensive evaluation and a personalized treatment plan are the first steps to treating co-occuring disorders. What else can you expect? We explore here.

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Options for dual diagnosis treatment

There are a number of different options in dual diagnosis treatment for patients who are living simultaneously with a drug abuse disorder and a co-occurring mental health disorder. No two treatment programs will be alike because it is rare to find two patients who need exactly the same level of support in the same areas of recovery. Because of this variance across program experiences, many prospective patients wonder what exactly they can expect should they decide to enroll in a dual diagnosis program.

In general, dual diagnosis treatment for addiction and co-occurring disorders will provide patients with the following:

1. Extensive evaluation and diagnostic process

Before a unique treatment plan can be designed, it is important for you to undergo evaluation. Different tests will be chosen based on the symptoms and issues you report. After evaluation(s) of the need for dual diagnosis treatment, an accurate diagnosis can be made.

2. Personalized treatment plan

Based on the results of the various tests done during the evaluation, your treatment team can create a unique treatment plan just for you. Since both mental health issues and substance abuse are the focus of treatment, therapies will be chosen based on their ability to help you stabilize quickly which can then be further customized as you progress toward treatment goals.

3. Psychiatric treatment

For most mental health disorders, psychiatric care provided by a specialist in your mental health diagnosis and substance abuse treatment is the best option. What dual diagnosis means is individualized care. Specific to you, this is a one-on-one therapy that focuses on helping you to better understand and manage your mental health issues.

4. Increased social support

Meeting regularly with support groups that understand your struggles with substance abuse as well as the problems created by your mental health symptoms, and how those two intersect, can help you to feel stronger in recovery.

5. Medication monitoring

Many patients need medication to help them stabilize their mental health symptoms and stop them from intruding on their ability to manage their day-to-day responsibilities. Doses and specific medications may be adjusted and altered in order to find the right combination for your needs. During this period, medical monitoring is helpful to ensure that you are safe and that any complications that develop are dealt with immediately.

6. Regular check-ins

As you begin to build up time in sobriety and make progress in treatment, you will find that certain therapies are working for you and others may not be helping you in the way that you had hoped. Regular check-ins with your case manager or primary counselor will help you to address those issues and make changes to your treatment plan as needed.

7. Family support

Your family members will need support as you go through treatment, which they can often find through your dual diagnosis treatment program. Fortunately, there are a number of options for family members, including support groups specifically for friends and loved ones of those in recovery, and counselors who can answer their questions about your personal experience so that they can better support you in sobriety.

8. Long-term aftercare support

Aftercare treatments and therapies are the best way to ensure that the progress made during rehab continues after transitioning back home and that new obstacles are faced successfully without relapse on either front.

Find out more about dual diagnosis treatment and what you can expect when you choose Axis as your recovery destination. Contact us at the phone number listed above today.

About the author
Tim has an extensive background writing for television, film, radio, and other diverse forms of media including apps, blogs, and social media. His latest creation, for the Axis Recovery Community, is the character of SoberMan, a sober superhero whose mission is to spread the word via Facebook about the importance of recovery, one meme at a time.
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