CODs, or co-occurring disorders, are mental health disorders which occur side-by-side with addiction issues: depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, anxiety, etc. Sometimes these diseases played a direct role in causing the addiction in the first place, or vice-versa. Regardless of the specific cause of the disease, it must be treated hand-in-hand with addiction for the rehabilitation to be successful. Rehab facilities specializing in treating co-occurring disorders (also called dual diagnoses) treat a patient’s mental and physical health together in order to heal their psychological scars and ensure their permanent sobriety.
Addiction Doesn’t Always Travel Alone
Addiction has been classified as a chronic mental disorder, one which is progressive and debilitating. But it’s not alone. There are other recurrent and steadily-worsening mental disorders as well: bipolar disorder, anxiety, schizophrenia, OCD, PTSD, and depression. Sometimes a person develops multiple mental disorders at once, causing symptoms to overlap. This makes diagnosis and treatment more complicated, particularly when addiction is involved. The chemistry of the patient’s brain has been altered, and the symptoms of one mental disorder may be aggravating the symptoms of the other. It’s the physicians’ job to try to understand which disease is causing which symptoms, so that an effective treatment plan may be constructed around the patient’s needs. Some psychological disorders increase risk factors for addictive behavior, and these must be treated if relapse is to be prevented. The same is true of certain addictions being risk factors for mental illness. They must be treated in concert with addiction for treatment to be effective and long-lasting.
Let us take anxiety as an example. People with anxiety disorders such as OCD might drink alcohol compulsively in order to calm themselves down. Alcohol is a depressant, meaning that it suppresses the heart and respiration rate and functions of the central nervous system—the brain. Slowing the brain down and inducing a state of alcoholic stupor is a boon to any sufferer of anxiety. This is common knowledge—the Anxiety and Depression Association of America has found that one in five people with an anxiety disorder also abuses a substance of some kind.
Treating Co-Occurring Disorders
Co-occurring disorders are treated the same as any other type of mental disorder. Addiction Drug Rehab Chicago makes special allowances for each different disorder combination, constructing individualized recovery plans for patients based on their specific maladies. Each person responds differently to their drug of choice based on their co-occurring disorders, genetic makeup, environment, and other factors, and they will respond differently to withdrawal and therapy as well. A one-size-fits-all approach won’t be adequate. Addiction Drug Rehab Chicago provides a personalized regimen of detox, psychotherapy, and behavioral counseling which empowers the patient to take their life back from addiction and regain their independence from substances forever. The curriculum of treatment includes:
- Educational materials and classes
- Cognitive behavioral counseling
- Trigger awareness and temptation resistance
- Stress management techniques
- Post-rehab support and relapse prevention
At Addiction Drug Rehab Chicago, your recovery is the highest priority. Their talented medical experts and qualified clinical staff have years of experience treating addiction and co-occurring disorders jointly, and have the expertise necessary to usher you through an efficient and effective 45- to 90-day care plan which suits your unique requirements. Medication, therapy, activities, outings, vitamins, dietary changes, and other alterations may all factor in to your treatment plan, and are designed specifically to enable you to live a healthy, drug-free life free of relapse or temptation.