Washington, D.C. Dual Diagnosis Rehab Centers

Addiction and mental illness often go hand in hand and make it difficult to live a healthy and productive life. Dual Diagnosis rehabs in Washing D.C. focus on treating both of these conditions in order to provide a safe and effective recovery to individuals suffering from addiction in conjunction with a mental health disorder.

The District of Columbia is home to approximately 600,000 residents and 23,000 of these adults live with serious mental illness. Unfortunately, the District’s mental health services are only able to serve about 42 percent of adults who have mental health disorders. In Washington, D.C., 3,754 adults aged 18 or older (15 percent) have received a diagnosis of depression in their lifetime; 3,758 adults aged 18 and older (9.5 percent) have received a diagnosis of anxiety. Currently, 3,485 (7.9 percent) of Washington, D.C. adults report being depressed. A total of 3,545 (2.6 percent) of Washington, D.C. adults are under serious psychological distress, according to the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System.

Mental illness is not limited to anxiety, depression or psychological distress. Among nursing home residents between the ages of 65 and 74, 7.2 percent suffer from dementia; for individuals aged 75 to 84, that percentage increased to 13.7 percent. Left untreated, dementia, depression, anxiety and other mental illnesses can have a serious impact on quality of life.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment Helps Mental Illness & Addiction

Addiction is common in individuals with mental health problems. In fact, approximately 50 percent of individuals with severe mental disorders are also affected by substance abuse. More than half of all drug abusers have at least one mental illness; 37 percent of individuals who abuse alcohol also have a mental illness.

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Substance abuse problems and mental health issues won’t get any better when they are ignored. In fact, ignoring both problems, or only trying to treat one, is all but a guarantee for continued health and sobriety concerns. Individuals with depression and anxiety often use alcohol and drugs to “self-medicate”. This can further feelings of helplessness and hopelessness, creating a downward spiral.

Recognizing the existence of a mental health problem and substance abuse problem–known as co-occurring disorder–can be a difficult process. When alcohol or drug abuse occurs in conjunction with depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and other mental health conditions, it can be difficult to properly diagnose the co-occurring conditions. Denial is common with substance abuse; after all, admitting that you or a loved one has a problem can be extremely difficult. Recognizing the signs of mental health disorders and addiction, however, is the first step toward sobriety. When both mental illness and addiction are effectively addressed through dual diagnosis treatment, individuals can embrace sobriety and live a full, active life.

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