Rehabs.com Effective Treatment for Drug Addiction and Mental Illness in Florida.
Substance abuse and mental illness are often so tightly intertwined that it’s hard to distinguish one from the other. The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) estimates that at least 50 percent of people with a mental illness also abuse drugs or alcohol. This close relationship makes it hard for addiction professionals to find the best way to treat people with a dual diagnosis.
Does Addiction Cause Mental Illness?
There’s no easy answer to the question of how addiction and mental illness influence each other. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) points out that in some cases, drug abuse may cause mental illness. Drugs like meth, cocaine and heroin can cause changes in brain chemistry that lead to mood disorders, cognitive impairment, depression or anxiety. On the other hand, many people who have a chronic mental illness learn to use drugs or alcohol as a way to manage their symptoms. In yet another possible scenario, addiction and mental illness are caused by the same risk factors, such as genetic makeup, trauma, impaired family relationships or social instability.
*Which Substances Are Commonly Abused by People With Mental Illness?
According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), the substances abused most frequently by people with a dual diagnosis are, in order:
- Prescription tranquilizers and sleeping medications
NAMI adds that most mentally ill people who abuse drugs or alcohol are males, and most are between the ages of 18 and 44.
Why Is It So Hard to Get Help?
If you drink heavily, misuse prescription medications or take street drugs, and you’re trying to cope with a mental illness, you may at a loss about how and where to get help. Dual diagnosis rehabilitation programs are available to treat both your addiction and your mental illness, but finding these facilities can be challenging.
The mentally ill face a lot of barriers when they seek treatment for substance abuse. Addiction treatment facilities and self-help groups often don’t have the resources to identify or treat mental illness, and as a result, certain behaviors may be misunderstood. Symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and other conditions may make it difficult for the mentally ill to interact consistently with counselors and peers. People who are disabled by chronic mental illness may find it difficult to attend meetings or appointments regularly, especially if they don’t have reliable transportation.
Call us at 844-660-0084 and speak with an addiction specialist today