Dual diagnosis

What is a dual diagnosis

Dual diagnosis is where the patient has one or more diagnosed mental health issues as well as a substance abuse or alcohol problem.

A dual diagnosis can include

  • A mental health issue which could lead to a substance abuse issue
  • A substance or alcohol abuse issue which leads to a Mental Health issue.
  • Continued alcohol/substance abuse which leads to a deterioration of the person’s mental health issues.

For a descriptive Dual Diagnosis see Health Victoria

The treatment for Dual Diagnosis requires specialist expertise in both the Mental Health treatment and also the alcohol or drug abuse.

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Characteristics of Dual Diagnosis

Some of the following are characteristics often found in someone with a dual diagnosis. See the Better Health Channel

  • Separation from family and friends.
  • Refusal to co-operate with professional assistance.
  • Become emotional.
  • Display psychiatric symptoms often severe.
  • Often homeless or constantly moving their place of living.
  • The frequency of relapse is higher than non-dual diagnosis patients.
  • Higher frequency of being hospitalised and requiring emergency treatment.

At 21Renew we work in conjunction with the client’s doctor and Mental Health Specialist in the treatment with anyone suffering from a dual diagnosis. Any treatment plan for alcohol or drug abuse is designed as part of the client’s overall treatment program.