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Dual Diagnosis
Drug Treatment Centers Texas

It’s not at all uncommon for patients who have substance abuse issues to also have mental health issues. Very often, one precedes the other. Patients who have established mental health issues often turn to mind-altering substances to try to alleviate them. Likewise, long-term substance abuse can also cause or trigger certain mental health problems.

Treatment statistics collected by the National Alliance on Mental Illness indicate that roughly half of all people who abuse drugs also have a mental illness. Roughly one out of three people who are diagnosed with a mental illness will abuse a mind-altering substance at some point in their life. These numbers are similar both at a national level and in Texas.

Dual Diagnosis Pairings

When a mental health issue and a substance abuse issue are simultaneously present in a patient, this is called a “dual diagnosis.” Below we have listed some of the most common pairings of substance abuse and mental health issues.


Depression and Addiction

While one might expect people suffering from depression to use stimulants like cocaine and meth to try to improve their mood, they actually also use depressants like alcohol and heroin at almost equal rates. Whatever the substance of choice, depression is very often accompanied by some sort of abuse of a mind-altering drug or alcohol. Sustained abuse of these substances can also cause a person to develop depression. Texas treatment centers see this form of dual diagnosis every single day.

Anxiety and Addiction

Anxiety and substance abuse are seen together nearly as frequently as depression and substance abuse are. Those who suffer from a form of anxiety often take depressants like alcohol and heroin to blunt or mask the symptoms. This is especially common among younger people who may not be aware they have a health issue that needs to be medically treated.

Stimulant abusers also frequently experience severe anxiety as a side effect while they are high. In time, they can actually develop chronic symptoms of this nature. Some of the stronger stimulants, such as methamphetamine, can actually cause brain damage over time that gives the user chronic symptoms that are very similar to those of chronic schizophrenia.

Eating Disorders and Addiction

It may surprise some people to learn that eating disorders are statistically the most deadly form of mental health disorder. And this is without the complication of an added substance abuse disorder!

Alcohol is most frequently paired with an eating disorder. In addition to dulling negative feelings and self-image, binging on alcohol is also a means of inducing vomiting so that the person can continue eating. When large amounts of alcohol are taken frequently in this manner, it is usually not long before alcoholism develops.

PTSD and Addiction

PTSD haunts survivors of violent or traumatic incidents with intruding thoughts and flashbacks that they cannot control. These intrusive thoughts lead them to symptoms such as unpredictable outbursts of anger or violence. PTSD sufferers often turn to substance abuse as a means of trying to control these symptoms and drive the negative thoughts away. A study published in the journal Alcohol Research and Health reported that about half of all people who suffer from PTSD will abuse alcohol at some point in response to it, and about one out of three will try an illicit drug in an attempt to deal with their symptoms.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment in Texas

Many licensed, certified and accredited treatment centers specialize in dual diagnosis cases. It is important to do research beforehand to determine which facilities exclusively treat patients with a dual diagnosis The initial several days of medical detox is the point at which a mental health issue will likely be diagnosed if one is present. A high-quality treatment center incorporates this information into the treatment plan and ensures that you get the mental health counseling you need. Mental health and substance abuse issues need to be treated simultaneously for recovery to be effective, and a treatment center the place to get this done.

For more information about accredited dual diagnosis treatment facilities, contact an addiction specialist today. A brighter future awaits.