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Mental health complications

Mental health complications and drug addiction are never friendly on their own and if they were to be combined with one’s health, it can only be painful, to say the least, Addiction withdrawal fears and sustainable health can never be compatible in any way

Mental health complications and drug addiction: Dual diagnosis

When on is faced with both drug addiction and mental health condition, it is often referred to us the dual diagnosis. Professionally, doctor Dalal Akoury MD, of AWAREmed health and wellness resource center explains that the combination of the two conditions can be very complex and administer treatment to such victims is often very difficult and more complicated compared to when both were to be treated separately. Because of that, it’s distressing that people suffering from mental illness are also struggling with drug addiction concurrently. The environmental factors greatly influence how people get infected with these two health conditions. For instance, people with low socioeconomic status, military veterans and those with multiple general medical illness tend to bear more risk of abusing drugs, alcohol and other stimulants. Dual diagnosis is so common this day’s that statistics indicate that one-third of all alcohol abusers and more than one-half of all drug abusers are also battling mental illnesses.

Mental health complications and drug addiction: The relationship between substance use and mental illness

This is can be very complex and is often considered in the following ways:

  • Drugs and alcohol may be used for self-medication. In such cases, people with mental illness may have untreated or inadequately treated conditions (such as anxiety or depression) that may “feel less painful” when the person is high on drugs or alcohol. Unfortunately, while drugs and alcohol may feel good in the moment, abuse of these substances doesn’t treat the underlying condition and almost without exception makes it worse.
  • Drugs and alcohol can deteriorate the underlying mental illnesses. This can happen both during acute intoxication (e.g., a person with depression becomes suicidal in the context of drinking alcohol) and during withdrawal from a substance (e.g. a person with panic attacks experiences worsening symptoms during heroin withdrawal).
  • Drugs and alcohol can cause a person without mental illness to experience the onset of symptoms for the first time. For example, a twenty-year-old college student who begins to hear threatening voices inside of his head and becomes paranoid that his chemistry professor is poisoning his food after smoking marijuana could represent a reaction to the drug (potentially called a “substance-induced psychosis”) or the first episode of psychosis for this individual.

Drug addiction and alcohol always result in a worse prognosis for a person with mental illness. People who are actively using drugs are less likely to follow through with the treatment plans they created with their healthcare providers they are not likely to follow their medication regimens and may not be consistent in keeping their appointments. If this continues over time it may lead to more psychiatric hospitalizations and other adverse outcomes. Active users are also less likely to receive adequate medical care for similar reasons and are more likely to experience severe medical complications and premature death. Drug addicts with mental illness are also at increased risk of impulsive and potentially violent acts. Perhaps most concerning is that people who abuse drugs and alcohol are more likely to attempt suicide and to die from their suicide attempts. Finally, looking at the consequences of dual diagnosis, we can’t sit back and watch without doing something. Doctor Akoury is leading in finding solutions for such and if you need help you can schedule an appointment with her today for the commencement of your recovery process.

Mental health complications and drug addiction: Dual diagnosis

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