What is a dual diagnosis?
If someone is addicted to substances or a certain behaviour and also struggles with a mental disorder, ADHD, autism, depression, anxiety disorder, and so on, we call this a dual diagnosis.
Hence, this isn’t the presence of two or more addictions but the combination of an addiction with a psychological problem.
For example, alcohol and drug addiction are often associated with depression or an anxiety disorder. On the other hand, it is also true that someone who is depressed is at a higher risk of addiction. People who don’t feel good about themselves may initially try to alleviate the symptoms with alcohol, drugs, sex, and so on, but they can end up in a vicious circle whereby the mental disorder and the addiction maintain and reinforce each other.
A dual diagnosis has a major social and personal impact over time. You can no longer function at work or school, you neglect your relationships and experience physical problems, and so on.
How can Affect2U help you?
Often clients tell us that they have been labelled with a dual diagnosis. At intake and admission, we always do our own clinical screening. This is because it is difficult to distinguish between the symptoms of the addiction itself and other causes. Many symptoms specific to and resulting from addiction and/or trauma are ‘controlled’ with medication, but this isn’t always necessary, and the medication can be tapered off where appropriate.
The first and most important step is admitting you have a problem. The moment you cross that difficult threshold, a multidisciplinary and experienced team is ready to guide you.
Together we will find the most appropriate solution for you. You can be helped on an outpatient basis or opt to be admitted to our home environment.
Recover is an action verb. You have to pay constant attention to it and take action to work on it – together with others. Affect2U couldn’t give me any guarantees that I would “never use again”, but they did give me lots of tools to help make this happen.