Alcohol Rehab and Dual Diagnosis Treatment: Things You Ought to Know

Alcohol Rehab and Dual Diagnosis Treatment: Things You Ought to Know


Individuals who suffer from substance abuse and mental health disorders find it more challenging to undertake a successful rehab program. Until the early 1990s, mental health problems were treated separately from alcohol addiction. This paradigm often led to discontinuity and depression for the addict. Over the last two decades, however, alcohol rehab professionals have started drawing clear relations between substance abuse and mental health disorders. This has paved way to a new innovation in the field of alcohol rehab treatment: Dual Diagnosis Treatment (DDT).

What is Dual Diagnosis Treatment?

DDT typically couples with alcohol or substance abuse rehab with treatment for behavior disorders. This enables the treatment professionals to look at the patient’s troubles as a continuum and enables the doctors to provide a more holistic treatment to the patients. In most cases, alcohol withdrawal is known to lead the addict into deep-rooted mental trauma and depression. This situation can soon lead to unending series of behavioral disorders such as Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) or borderline personality disorder.

How Will My Doctor Handle My Dual Diagnosis Treatment?

Dual Diagnosis Treatment not only saves the patient a lot of mental trouble, it also enables the medical practitioner to treat the patients better. Traditionally, a person suffering from both addiction and mental disorders were treated in parallel and the two medical teams usually had little to no contact with one another. This often led to lack of communication between the two medical teams and resulted in additional pressure on the patient to relay information about both issues from one medical team to the other. However, with a Dual Diagnosis Treatment, there is essentially one team assigned to a patient, which gives the medical team a real-time update on the patient’s progress and saves both the team and the patient a lot of redundant effort.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment also gives healthcare professionals a chance to upgrade their skills. Addiction professionals, over the last two decades, have learned to identify patients suffering from dual disorders. Earlier, it would take a psychiatrist a couple of sessions with a typical mental health patient to learn the real cause of the patient’s condition. Similarly, an addiction expert would not learn about a patient’s mental or behavioral disorders until the patient reached the detox stage and showed withdrawal symptoms. DDT, however, has enabled medical professionals to upgrade their skills and identify such patients at the early stages of their treatment.

How Do I Know if I Need Dual Diagnosis Treatment?

While Dual Diagnosis Treatment is good for patients who are dually diagnosed, it may not really be the best treatment for everyone. While most addicts are known to have behavioral and mental disorders, it may not always be the case. DDT is an expensive proposition because this treatment requires more healthcare professionals to cater to an individual. Dual Diagnosis Treatment also takes more time to carry out as compared to a simple alcohol rehab program. Therefore, it makes no economical or practical sense to enroll for a dual diagnosis program unless you are sure that you are suffering from both addiction and a behavior disorder.

As a final piece of advice, I would suggest that you carry out independent research on Dual Diagnosis Treatment and talk to as many professionals as you can before going ahead with DDT before making a decision on your recovery. DDT can be an unnecessary expense for those who are not actually dually diagnosed, so it is important to ensure that this is the desired treatment before enrolling in a rehab center.