Co-occurring disorders is a widely used term for an individual that has concerns with substance abuse and mental health. Individuals with co-occurring mental illness and substance use disorder (SUD) encounter a number of challenges that can impact their quality of life.
Those that are diagnosed with a co-occurring disorder and substance abuse are shown to have a significantly higher level of impairment in everyday functioning, and are at a higher risk of self-harm attempt and significant health problems that may lead to hospitalization.
Treating co-occuring disorders and substance abuse
Substances used by people with co-occurring disorders may include, alcohol, prescription drugs or other substances, whether legal or illegal, including alcohol, opiates, stimulants, and cannabis.
Substance abuse problems can cover up the person’s mental illness, making it more difficult to treat. Treatment is also further complicated because drugs are often prescribed by medical professionals to help reduce symptoms of their mental health illness and by people that are resistant to getting help due to the perception of mental illness. It is a common occurrence that people with mental health disorders do not address their substance use because they don’t believe it is relevant to their problems.
Treatment of co-occurring disorders is complicated by the fact that alcohol or drugs are often prescribed by medical professionals to help reduce symptoms of their mental health issues, including depression, anxiety, stress, and by people that are resistant to getting help due to the perception of mental illness.
According to SAMHSA’s 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), approximately 7.9 million adults had co-occurring disorders in 2014. During the past year, for those adults surveyed who experienced substance use disorders and any mental illness, rates were highest among adults ages 26 to 49 (42.7%). For adults with past-year serious mental illness and co-occurring substance use disorders, rates were highest among those ages 18 to 25 (35.3%) in 2014.
At Ayre Counseling, we understand that for effective treatment of co-occurring disorders, both mental health and substance use disorders impact one another and must be treated together. At Ayre Counseling, utilizing our multi-disciplinary staff we incorporate an integrated treatment plan to treat both conditions resulting in highly successful outcomes.
|Mental illness||Substance Abuse|
• Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
• Personality Disorders
• Pathological Gambling
• Chronic Pain (Physical pain impacting mental health)
• Stimulants (Cocaine/Amphetamines)
• Inhalants / Solvents
• Prescription medication
Reach out today
If you or a loved one is struggling with co-existing disorders or substance abuse, you are not alone. The skilled and caring staff at Ayre Counseling can help you determine the root issue and heal.
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