Understanding a Dual Diagnosis

Individuals who suffer from a dual diagnosis often misunderstand their own emotions and feelings. They try to self-medicate themselves using whatever means they have available. This can eventually create a vicious cycle that causes them to lose their focus. The need to self-medicate turns into an addiction that propels them forward into a downward spiral. No matter how hard they try to straighten their path, the addiction, and the disease work together to sabotage their efforts.

What Is a Dual Diagnosis?

A dual diagnosis involves both an addiction and a mental illness. Both conditions compromise the mental clarity of the patient making it difficult for them to find a path to sobriety and actually stay on it. If a dual diagnosis is suspected, the patient must be evaluated for both conditions. This may require being admitted into a facility that specializes in both mental health conditions and addiction recovery. An inpatient facility provides the best option for someone with a dual diagnosis because they are able to receive round the clock care from medical professionals.

Which Is Treated First?

When a dual diagnosis has been given, the first step is to enter an inpatient program so you can begin the detoxification process. Once the drugs or alcohol are out of your system, it will be easier for your team of medical professionals to evaluate your needs and create an effective treatment plan. Every person is different when it comes to the treatment options that are offered. Treating a mental health condition is usually the first step. This takes away the need to self-medicate and puts you back on solid ground. As soon as the first phase of your treatment plan is in place, your team will begin to gradually introduce your recovery plan.

The Benefits of Inpatient Treatment

The benefits of entering into an inpatient treatment program are extensive. First and foremost, you receive 24-hour medical care. Embarking on a recovery journey, especially when you are dealing with a mental illness, can be difficult. The detoxification process can lead to intense physical symptoms, causing you to be frustrated and disoriented. When you are surrounded by a professional medical team, you will have the assistance you need to work through the difficult times without falling back into your old habits.

Another benefit of an inpatient treatment program is that you are surrounded by others who are in the same situation you are. They understand the problems you may be experiencing and are oftentimes, working toward the same goals. Together, you can offer one another support and guidance and begin to create a long-term path of sobriety.

Long-Term Recovery Goals

Long-term recovery goals are important when working with a dual diagnosis. Not only must you focus on keeping your mental health in the best state, you must also take positive steps to maintain your sobriety. Working toward infinite recovery means facing challenges and obstacles and doing what you need to do to move past them. Staying on your recovery path will not always be easy, but it will always be worth it.

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