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Dual Diagnosis Treatment

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More people than ever before are seeking treatment for both mental illness and addiction. Because more people are seeking the treatment they deserve, counselors and mental health professionals learn more about the subtleties of treating different issues every day.

Not long ago, addiction counselors believed you should focus on the addiction before you were able to treat other mental illnesses. Now, most agree addiction and mental illness coincide with each other and so should treatment. As a result, the diagnosis of substance abuse with mental disorders is known as dual-diagnosis and requires a qualified team to handle its execution. At Discovery Transitions, located in the Los Angeles area, we want to help both both ends of the spectrum

Symptoms of Dual Diagnosis

A dual-diagnosis creates a challenge for both addiction and mental health professionals. Dual diagnosis patients have more difficulty getting sober, more difficulty concentrating on their different treatments, and are more likely to relapse. Unfortunately, without proper counseling and a plan, recovery can be tricky.

Though dual diagnosis is abnormal – it’s not uncommon.

According to a report from the Journal of the American Medical Association

  • 37% of alcohol abusers and 53% of drug users have co-occurring disorders
  • 29% of all people diagnosed with mental illness say they abuse alcohol or drugs

Because there are several types of mental illness associated with addiction, it can be difficult to look for specific symptoms.

There are obvious signs of drug and alcohol addiction including:

  • An uncontrollable craving for drugs or alcohol
  • Severe behavioral changes like mood swings
  • A sudden transition from daily habits
  • Displaying radical and uncontrollable behavior when under the influence of drugs or alcohol

Dual diagnosis intensive outpatient treatment los angeles ,ca

Most Common Dual Diagnosis Types 

There are dozens of different psychological disorders, but some are more likely to coincide with addiction than others.

The most common dual diagnosis orders include:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Schizophrenia
  • Personality Disorders (borderline, anxiety, etc.)

Medical and addiction professionals use a standard set of screening tools to help determine people at risk for dual diagnosis. Patients with a co-occurring disorder must find a treatment plan that can effectively treat both issues.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment Programs 

It is common for people with mental illness to self-medicate. Alcohol can shut off terrible voices of depression and drugs can provide temporary relief for dark thoughts. Self-medicating appears to help psychological issues short-term. After some time, however, users will experience addiction and heightened symptoms of their mental illness.

Treating mental illness and addiction can be difficult. Both issues involve varying symptoms that require unique treatment. Luckily, there are dual diagnosis facilities like Discovery Transitions. These facilities specialize in diagnosing and treating co-occurring disorders.


Two primary forms of treatment include:

Dual Diagnosis Outpatient Treatment – Discovery’s dual diagnosis outpatient treatment program is designed for addicts with manageable co-occurring disorders. Manageable means the addict has not hit their rock bottom is not in poor or failing health, not in legal trouble, and has a solid family relationship.

Unlike inpatient treatment, outpatient participants can leave the facility once the treatment session is over to tend to family, work, and other obligations. The outpatient treatment dual diagnosis program is very similar to the inpatient program but not as intense and without as many safety nets. It should be noted that addicts and alcoholics in outpatient treatment have a higher risk of relapse.

Dual Diagnosis Inpatient Treatment –  Inpatient dual diagnosis treatment uses the same lessons and techniques from the outpatient program. The difference is, patients receive 24/7 care and reside in the treatment facility. Inpatient treatment removes the addict from their daily life for more hands-on treatment and monitoring as well. Patients also receive a safe-space to focus all of their energy on recovering.

Discovery Transitions uses three steps for outpatient dual diagnosis drug rehab:


Therapeutic InterventionTherapies at Discovery Transitions include one-on-one and group therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, motivational interviewing, and more. All therapies at Discovery are backed with years of clinical research and success.

Life-Skills Development – A patient with a dual diagnosis typically needs more than strict drug counseling. Discovery re-iterates forgotten life skills for a well-rounded foundation of recovery.

Relapse PreventionRelapse Prevention is the most important part of dual diagnosis treatment. Relapse prevention arms patients with tools and techniques like creating boundaries, recognizing triggers, and more. In doing so, the patient has a greater chance at long-term sobriety.

Discovery Transitions utilizes all of the vital aspects of inpatient treatment through their outpatient program with convenience in mind for all patients. Hours and days of attendance are flexible in order to work around any responsibilities you may have. Call one of our team members today to find out if our outpatient dual-diagnosis program is right for you.

Signs You Need Dual Diagnosis Treatment 

Admitting you have a problem with substance abuse, or a psychological disorder is frightening – what will your family say? What about your job? There are stigma and shame surrounding addiction and mental illness but the truth is, without treatment, someone addicted to drugs or alcohol with a dual diagnosis will only get worse. Patients don’t want to tell their families they have a problem but it’s better to admit there are issues and seek help before you must be picked up at the local jail, hospital, or before your family has to ID your body.

Substance abuse with mental disorders looks different in different people. However, if you identify with the following statements, you are at risk of serious consequences and should seek help immediately.

You may need dual diagnosis treatment if:

  • You used drugs or alcohol to self-medicate
  • Tried to quit without success
  • Your drug or alcohol intake has increased
  • You take drugs or drink as soon as you wake up
  • Can’t control how much you drink or use after you start.
  • You are concerned about your substance abuse
  • You drink or use while you drive
  • Loved ones have expressed concern about your substance abuse
  • You drink or use drugs when you are angry or upset
  • You drink or use drugs alone

Getting Help at Discovery Transitions 

Discovery Transitions has professional and certified staff, clinically tested treatment methods, and a low ratio of staff to patients for dual diagnosis treatment. We are located in Los Angeles, California. In addition, we utilize a custom approach to ensure that treatment is designed to help people with the specific problems they face. Don’t wait any longer for the vicious cycle of addiction and mental illness to continue – reach out to Discovery Transitions today.

Don't Just Take Our Word For It

  • Discovery Transitions changed my life!! Great food, great staff, wonderful place! Awesome to get to know the amazing clients and see that i was not alone in my recovery. I made friends for life in the short time i got to spend there. Not a better facility anywhere in my opinion!!The team of employees, from the Technicians all the way up to the Owner, all have a patient first mentality.

    Leto M

  • Going to treatment at Discovery Transitions was one of the best programs I've participated in, they helped me get my life back. They have amazing staff and overall good-natured people. They focus on all aspects of counseling, case management, meetings, different types of therapy, including trauma, one on one counseling. This is coming from someone who has been traumatized and neglected. They helped me get to the root of the problem. Which most times can feel very uncomfortable but they provide groups that you participate in and communicate with other addicts and hear their life stories. They really are an organization of team working to help heal the conflicted minds of us addicts that we faced every day. I would highly recommend this treatment program to anyone suffering from substance abuse or mental health.

    Skyy S

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