If you have a mental health problem (such as depression or bipolar disorder) as well as an addiction disorder (for example, gambling, alcohol or sex), then you will qualify for dual diagnosis treatment.
Dual diagnosis was a term originally coined by the Americans back in the eighties to describe those with psychotic illnesses who also had an addiction to drugs or alcohol. These days, however, it is used to help define and diagnose those with both a mental health and addiction disorder. Other terms also used, which you may come across on your dual diagnosis journey, are: co-morbidity, co-occurring illnesses or dual disorder.
According to a research paper from DrugScope, UK Drug Policy Commission (UKDPC) and the Centre for Mental Health, a study funded by the Department of Health showed that the majority of people with a mental health disorder in the UK also have drug or alcohol disorders.
The paper reported that:
It isn’t just a problem in the UK. It is thought that nearly three-quarters of alcohol or substance abusers in Australia also have a mental illness; and in the US, it is estimated that around 17.5 million adults have mental health problem, with 4 million of these also suffering with alcohol or drug addiction.
As you can see, dual diagnosis disorders are extremely common. But as they have only been recognised fairly recently, many people over the years have not been treated correctly – leading to years of relapse and disappointment – because mental and addiction disorders have historically been dealt with separately.
At Red Umbrella, we can help you find integrated treatment for your own personal combination of mental health and addiction disorders.
Seeking treatment for dual diagnosis is complicated for three main reasons. The first is down to the difficulty of identifying the underlying mental health and addiction disorders; the second is because integrated treatment is relatively new; and the third is due to the intense challenge surrounding the effective management of combined disorders.
At Red Umbrella, our advice and experience will enable you to find the right treatment for dual diagnosis. Our team have personal experience of dual diagnosis issues and will ensure that you make the right recovery choice.