Which Mental Illnesses Most Commonly Co-occur with Addiction?

Addiction is a disease of the mind that causes a person to have obsessive thoughts about a particular substance followed by compulsive behaviors of using it.  When a person suffers from addiction, they are well aware of the consequences that will come after use.  The craving is so strong, however, they use anyway.  After using, they may feel guilty about their behavior, which causes them to use more in an attempt to numb the guilt.  Many times, someone suffering from addiction has another significant mental illness.  This is referred to as dual diagnosis.  Specific substances go hand-in-hand with some mental illnesses, and the variance of each situation will determine the causal order.
Many people who use cocaine can develop anxiety disorders.  Cocaine, whether taken intranasally or smoked in the form of crack, can cause severe paranoia.  When you use cocaine, you may always think someone knows or is coming to confront you.  Cocaine users don’t want people to know they’re high.  They become extremely shady and usually want to stay inside and close off the outside world.  Hallucinations and insomnia can even occur.  Someone using cocaine on a consistent basis may develop these symptoms when they’re not using, ultimately resulting in an anxiety disorder.
If you suffer from severe alcoholism, it is likely you are withdrawn from society and like to stay if the comfort of your own space.  While antisocial personality disorder typically develops during the teenage years, alcoholism can increase the intensity of it.  A person’s inhibitions are lowered with the consumption of alcohol, which makes their antisocial behaviors more noticeable.  An alcoholic with antisocial personality disorder is only concerned about their own needs, despite how others may feel.  They can be downright mean and may get into legal trouble.
Phencyclidine (PCP) and marijuana have been reported to cause psychotic symptoms that mirror schizophrenia.  Marijuana, in particular, has been the subject of extensive research in recent years.  People with schizophrenia are more likely to abuse marijuana, despite of how it can trigger psychotic episodes.  Scientists are still trying to figure out whether early marijuana use causes schizophrenia or if already diagnosed individuals abuse it in an attempt to control their illness.
Depression can be common with the abuse of many substances.  Addiction is an isolating disease.  Those who aren’t able to make friends because of their disease can become extremely sad.  Neurological changes happen in the brain and an addict or alcoholic may begin to have suicidal thoughts.  A dual diagnosis can be more difficult to treat.  You may need a specialized treatment facility or one with access to a psychiatrist, rather than a counselor.  However, there is still hope and thousands of people suffering from a dual diagnosis have found sobriety and freedom from their illnesses.
Treatment and recovery for addiction should be simple. Simple Recovery offers dual diagnosis treatment for men and women in a multiphase format encouraging growth and development. Going back to school, back to work, or engaging in volunteer work, our clients waste no time starting their new lives as they continue to heal in mind, body, and spirit.
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