What is Dual Diagnosis

There’s a variety of names that are used to express the very same problem that a person may experience. That may be complicated; however, if you know the meaning of dual diagnosis and what it implies, you can easily understand the situation of the patient and how you should act around him or her.

Some people may think that dual diagnosis implies that an individual has two psychiatric illnesses simultaneously. But it is not quite an accurate guess. Instead, one of the problems that an individual confronts with a dual diagnosis is not really a psychological disorder at all. When somebody gets a dual diagnosis, the individuals have two quite tightly connected and continuing problems. The first one is a psychological disorder. The other is a drug addiction diagnosis. Dual diagnosis is more common than one would imagine since mental illness can lead to the usage of drugs or alcohol.

Dual Diagnosis

Psychiatric Aspect

There’re numerous distinct mental disorders that a patient may endure when a dual diagnosis is issued. However, there’re certain mental illnesses that seem to be more prevalent than others, which occur more often in a dual diagnosis than others. Mental illnesses impact individuals in various manners, and based on how they’re dealing with their condition in combination with the drug addiction; this might not be apparent immediately that there’s a problem. In other instances, the signs of drug addiction and mental illness may intertwine with one another.  It may make dual diagnosis more challenging since telling a sign from another might be difficult. They may even conceal each other and lead to further diagnostic and treatment difficulties.

Substance Abuse Aspect

Drug addiction may take different shapes. It’s conceivable that individuals search for methods to deal with their issues without seeking specialized care or discussing to friends and families initially. Continued use may develop into a drug dependence that will further exacerbate the problem of the mental disorder. It’s also conceivable that the continuous usage of drugs at the beginning point allows for the mental disorder to creep in later. Some individuals may recognize one disease and still fail to accept the second. They might agree that they’re sad, but when another individual tries to inform them that they’re also an alcoholic, they may go into denial. Things may rapidly develop into a hazardous cycle, and the individual may attempt to self-medicate, which can actually complicate their mental state.


Suffering a mental disorder combined with drug addiction may be hazardous for the individual, both at physical and psychological levels, which demands immediate attention. They require assistance and therapy. There’re several distinct potential combinations that deal with mental illness and drug addiction. Each of these factors combined may make it difficult to find out what the issue is, as well as how to effectively fight it. When a person goes through withdrawal of alcohol or drugs, some signs may resemble a mental disorder or the signs of one.

If you think somebody you know has a psychiatric disorder, and he or she is also using drugs, check if you can come up with a way to offer that individual the assistance he or she requires. Take notice if they appear to be having difficulties economically if they recede from social settings, have difficulties at the job, with relatives, or in personal relations, increasing hospitalization, repeated admissions for psychiatric care, or even have legal troubles or face imprisonment. The sooner you can persuade them that you really want to assist and that they would benefit from therapy, the better off they will be.