Everything You Need to Know About Dual Diagnosis Rehab in Long Island

Dual diagnosis rehab is a term that has been used to describe the process of treating an individual who suffers from both addiction and mental health issues at the same time. Dual diagnosis rehab is an important step in recovery for those with substance abuse problems, as it helps to ensure that they get every treatment option available to them. Those who have not yet begun their journey into recovery can find all the information they need on our website about what dual diagnosis means and how it relates specifically to Long Island. If you or someone close to you needs help, we are here 24/7!

Having a mental illness or addiction is one of the most challenging battles a person can fight. But having both at once seems impossible to overcome, and Thankfully, it’s not.

It’s what we call a dual diagnosis, and it’s more common than you may think. Over 1 in 4 adults who have a mental health disorder also suffer from a substance abuse problem.

More importantly, a dual diagnosis is treatable. But it is challenging—both for the patient and the medical staff.

Treatment for one condition the patient has may affect the other, and a way must (and will) be found to treat both of these challenging conditions simultaneously. Plus, each case of dual diagnosis is as unique as the individual seeking treatment. Being an addiction recovery center, Long Island Treatment Center does not provide dual diagnosis treatment. If you are looking for top-notch dual diagnosis treatment, our certified sister facilities have expert addiction doctors, qualified therapists, and experienced nurses to tackle all aspects of addiction.

But, as you’ll see from the guide below, there is hope for those seeking dual diagnosis treatment in Long Island. Read on to learn all you need to know about dual diagnosis rehab.

What is Dual Diagnosis?

A dual diagnosis is when a patient suffering from a mental health disorder has also developed a substance abuse problem. These are also known as co-occurring disorders.

The most challenging part of a dual diagnosis is that there are so many different ways to happen. For example, one dual diagnosis could be social anxiety plus alcoholism, while another could be depression plus heroin abuse. With endless combinations of possible co-occurring disorders, each one is a unique challenge the doctor has never faced before.

Furthermore, a treatment for one condition may worsen the other, and doctors must be extra careful when treating both patients’ conditions.

How do Dual Diagnoses Develop?

It usually starts as a single mental health disorder/addiction that then leads to another. For example, an alcoholic who’s ashamed of his addiction may become chronically depressed because of it. Then, the depression leads to more self-medication with alcohol.

Or, the individual might be chronically depressed first and then develop the drinking problem to self-medicate. Either way, you can see how both disorders reinforce each other. This adds to the challenge of treating a dual diagnosis.

Are Dual Diagnoses Common?

Yes, dual diagnoses are pretty standard. 7.9 million adults in America suffer from a dual diagnosis, and more than half of them (4.1 million) are men.

And that means that medical professionals have been treating millions of dual diagnosis cases for many years. So, although each one of these cases is still a unique challenge for doctors and medical staff, there are at least years of data and resources for them to work off of.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment is Personalized

There’s another plus side to having a unique condition. Because it’s unique, it requires special attention.

There’s no generic textbook cure, and there’s only attentive, personalized care—the very best.

Dual diagnosis patients receive more attention and a more carefully crafted/monitored treatment plan than those with less complex problems.

Both Conditions Are Treated Together

Due to the nature of a dual diagnosis, both conditions must be treated together. The reason is that, most often, both disorders feed off of each other.

We already mentioned how one’s alcoholism could contribute to depression. So, if you treat the alcoholism but not the underlying depression, the patient is more likely to return to drinking to self-medicate.

If one of the conditions goes untreated, it essentially derails any attempt to treat the other. The only solution is to treat both at once. This integrated approach also means that patients are typically treated for both disorders under one roof.

Treating Conditions Separately Is Ineffective or Worse

Not only do the conditions of a dual diagnosis affect each other, but the treatment of each will affect the other also. Sometimes, treating one condition can negatively affect the other.

For example, a medication for a mental health disorder might be terrible for someone addicted to certain substances. This is another reason the doctor must treat both problems—the whole problem—and not only part of the problem. Of course, the doctor can only treat both conditions if he is aware of them.

Dual Diagnosis Misdiagnosis

For the above reasons, the doctor must know all the details of a patient’s co-occurring disorders to treat them. Unfortunately, it happens often that the doctor is in the dark about one of the patient’s disorders.

The biggest reason is that the patient is reluctant to disclose the information, and it is, after all, very personal. While the patient may be comfortable telling the doctor about his social anxiety, he may not speak about his heroin addiction.

Then, the doctor will provide ineffective treatment, not knowing it should be adjusted for a co-occurring disorder.

Other times, the patient is unaware of the second condition. They may realize they have a drinking problem. But they may not realize that they have depression.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment Works Like a Mediator

As you can see, an essential part of dual diagnosis treatment is the doctor seeing the whole picture and crafts a treatment plan that’s appropriate for both conditions and how they affect each other.

Also, part of the treatment is helping the patient see things this way, too. If the patient can learn how these two conditions feed off of each other, it can help them stop the cycle. Then, they can fight both disorders more effectively.

This takes education and training with a therapist. CBT and other psychotherapy techniques might be employed.

Patients Are Legally Allowed Time Off For Dual Diagnosis Treatment

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) requires employers to give employees time off for medical/family issues. Both mental health disorders and addiction treatment are included in this act.

Individuals are entitled to 12 workweeks of medical leave (unpaid) for every 12 months. You cannot be fired for seeking dual diagnosis treatment, and the FMLA also covers family intervention for a loved one receiving dual diagnosis treatment.LA as well.

Do You Need Dual Diagnosis Rehab in Long Island?

Do you or a loved one need dual diagnosis treatment? Please don’t wait to get help.

Specialists are waiting for your call, message, or live chat right now. Don’t wait. Contact us now.

Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Long Island Treatment Center