Dually diagnosed patients are prospective recovering addicts, who suffer from a pre-existing or a recently-developed mental illness. Many mentally ill people drift towards drug abuse to hopefully subdue and ignore the difficulties posed by the illness; with certain drugs, (such as methamphetamine and heroin) underlying mental illnesses, which did not previously cause serious health and lifestyle problems, have been known to become active due to heavy drug abuse. Mind-altering substances can trigger or enhance existing mental illnesses.
Mental illnesses that tend to cause the most severe mental deterioration when paired with frequent drug abuse are: bipolar disorders, borderline personality disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder schizophrenia, and anxiety, to name just a few. Often times, people who abuse drugs may have had no idea that they suffered from an underlying mental condition, and when drug abuse causes symptoms to flare up, they are often even further stuck in denial then just drug addicts.
People who suffer from mental illness and drug addiction often exhibit more than the typical erratic behavior associated with drug addiction. Depending on the disposition of the mental illness, people can exhibit heightened animosity, disillusionment, confusion, hysteria, and depression among many other behavioral discrepancies.
When seeking help for individuals who suffer from dual illnesses, it is often difficult to get them to accept their problems. This is especially problematic with drug addicts who have only recently developed symptoms toward having a mental illness. It is often impossible to truly understand what a person suffers from if they haven’t had a pre-existing illness, thus making it hard to understand how much danger they pose to themselves and others around them.
In dual diagnosis treatment centers in PA facilities, dually diagnosed patients are known to be one of the hardest to handle. More often than not, they are combative, refuse medications, refuse cooperation in therapy, and sometimes refuse to comply with rehab facility rules and regulations. The best approach in helping these individuals is to seek a rehabilitation facility that treats all sides of mental addiction in one setting.
The process begins with medical evaluations. These consist of physical checks and interviews with psychiatrists and expert medical professionals. A complete mental assessment will validate whether or not an individual is suffering from drug addiction paired with another mental illness. At this point, medication can be prescribed to begin combating the mental illness, which only intensifies the drug addiction. Depending on the nature of drug addiction, individuals can also be prescribed medication to aid in the detoxification process.
After medical assessments and evaluation, dually diagnosed individuals are urged to enroll in a rehabilitation program that offers assistance for both ailments. Integration into addiction rehab will be paired with therapy for mental illness. It is considered impossible to alleviate one illness while the other remains untreated. It will require specialized therapy depending on the mental illness and intensive therapy for drug addiction. Both must progress together in order for any gain to be accomplished.