Dual Diagnosis Essay

422 Words2 Pages
Drug addiction and mental illness is commonly called a “dual diagnosis.” These mental illnesses range from depression to bipolar disorder or manic depression. When a person has a dual diagnosis they have two separate illnesses. It 's important for medical professionals to remember this since each illness needs isolated and treated by itself. Why Drug Addiction and Mental Illness Occur Together Although there are a lot of people dealing with drug addiction and mental illness it doesn 't mean that one caused the other. Even if one appeared first, it 's still difficult to show causality or directionality between them. Typically, mental disorders aren 't diagnosed until the symptoms progress to a certain point. This doesn 't mean that…show more content…
Understanding the Science Behind Drug Addiction and Mental Illness When you 're dealing with drug addiction and mental illness, you 're dealing with some common factors. First, genetics predispose you to developing an addiction and a mental illness. They also place you at a greater risk of developing a second disorder once the first one appears. This is why researchers believe that your genetics are responsible for 40 – 60% of your vulnerability here. Secondly, drugs and mental illness effect similar regions of your brain. One solid example of this lies in the brain circuits that are dependent on the neurotransmitter dopamine. This chemical transports messages between the neurons in your brain. Drugs and psychiatric disorders like depression and schizophrenia both affect this area of your brain. For this reason, brain changes from one of these things…show more content…
An example of this occurs when you begin abusing drugs before receiving a mental illness diagnosis. When this happens your brain 's structure and functioning change. Sometimes this triggers your underlying propensity for developing a mental illness. The opposite is also true. When you have a mental health diagnosis, sometimes you 're more vulnerable to substance abuse. This is because of the positive effects of the drugs. They tend to reduce your awareness of their negative effects. Sometimes they 'll even go as far as to relieve the unpleasant effects of the mental illness or the medication your doctor prescribes for it. Regardless of how your drug addiction and mental illness develop, you should know you 're not alone. Both youth and adults suffer through this. Fortunately, when both are properly treated you can successfully lead

More about Dual Diagnosis Essay

Open Document