Dual Diagnosis Treatment Centers Bay Area: How to Find Care

Bay Area Dual Diagnosis Treatment Center

How It Works & What to Expect

Table of Contents

Finding the Best Dual Diagnosis Treatment Centers in the Bay Area

Substance abuse often begins as an attempt to self-medicate mental conditions. In other cases, individuals develop mental conditions as a result of addiction. In either case, when an individual experiences both addiction and a concurrent mental health condition, it’s known as dual diagnosis.


Dual diagnosis is very common, and it’s offered here at the Wellness Retreat Recovery center in the Bay Area. Our team of qualified mental health professionals can help you both detox from drugs and alcohol while simultaneously treating any co-occurring mood disorders like depression, anxiety, or bipolar disorder.

Addressing Mental Health & Addiction with Dual Diagnosis

As substance abuse worsens, it can fuel mood disorders until it’s difficult to separate the symptoms of addiction from the co-occurring disorder. Treating the co-occurring disorder separately from the addiction, and vice versa, can have a negative impact on the likelihood of a successful treatment outcome. 


However, treating both conditions together can provide individuals with the education and resources needed for a healthy lifestyle in recovery. That’s why both addiction and underlying co-occurring disorders are both targeted during dual diagnosis treatment at the Wellness Retreat Recovery Center here in the Bay Area.

Types of Co-Occurring Disorders

Dual diagnosis is extremely common. In fact, most individuals who seek help for addiction are simultaneously dealing with co-occurring issues. Not only is dual diagnosis common, but there are also a number of mental health conditions that often coincide with addiction. These may include:

Most individuals with a dual diagnosis develop the condition before addiction starts. Addictions may develop as a result of attempting to subdue the negative emotional symptoms of these disorders. After a while, the body begins to become physically dependent and an individual feels as if they can no longer control the effects of their mental health issues without the use of the addictive substance.

The Most Common Co-Occurring Disorders for Dual Diagnosis Treatment

Dual diagnosis treatment is ideal for anyone that struggles with both an addiction and mood disorder. Some mood disorders are more common than others. Your medical team at the dual diagnosis treatment center of your choice will help diagnose any possible mood disorders so that you get the most robust rehabilitation possible. 


Some of the most common co-occurring disorders that can be treated during dual diagnosis treatment include:

Depression and Addiction


Studies consistently show that alcohol use is higher among individuals diagnosed with depression. Fortunately, both depression and alcoholism can be effectively treated through dual diagnosis rehabilitation.

Anxiety and Addiction


Because anxiety is often experienced on a spectrum, rising and falling throughout the day, it is often overlooked as a co-occurring disorder by individuals with drug and alcohol addiction. This is where dual diagnosis treatment can help.

Bipolar Disorder and Addiction


Addiction and bipolar disorder are two diagnoses that can benefit from dual diagnosis treatment. Both conditions are more common in individuals exposed to traumatic events or abuse in childhood, which is why high-quality dual diagnosis treatment always involves individual and group therapy.

ADHD and Addiction


Individuals with ADHD often have racing thoughts, which can trigger the desire to drugs or alcohol to cope. They also tend to struggle with impulsivity, which can fuel addiction further. Support from a dual diagnosis treatment center can provide the support you need to safely detox from drugs and alcohol.

Dual Diagnosis Facts You Should Know

When discussing addiction and mental health, it’s crucial to understand the importance of dual diagnosis and its implications for treatment. Up next, we will share some essential facts about dual diagnosis to highlight its prevalence and the importance of specialized treatment.

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Dual Diagnosis Is a Common Phenomenon

Many people may not know how prevalent dual diagnosis really is. But, according to a study done by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, individuals with a mental health condition are almost twice as likely to also struggle with substance abuse disorder. Therefore, it’s important that individuals who are considering treatment or their families are aware that mental health issues may be a factor. And, should be addressed during treatment for the best results.

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Dual Diagnosis Can Refer to a Number of Different Co-Occurring Illnesses

Dual diagnosis can mean the diagnosis of substance abuse disorder and any other mental health disorder. There are many types of patients who may need help with both in treatment. Certainly, there are more dual diagnosis patients diagnosed with depression or anxiety, as they are the most commonly diagnosed mental health disorders in the country. 


Still, that doesn’t mean that these individuals are the only type of co-occurring disorder patients. Other mental health conditions which can contribute to dual diagnosis may include bipolar disorder, PTSD, OCD, schizophrenia, and more.

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Self-Medication of Mental Health Conditions Often Leads to Addiction

One of the main causes of co-occurring disorders is that people living with mental health disorders attempt to self-medicate their symptoms with drugs or alcohol. The result is not only poorly managed symptoms of mental health conditions but the development of substance dependence.

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Addiction Can Also Lead to Mental Health Issues

While it’s more common for dual diagnosis patients to develop an addiction as a result of self-medicating mental health symptoms, it can also happen the other way around. Addiction can take a toll on not only a person’s physical body but their mind and emotional state too. Without addressing these symptoms of long term drug abuse, it’s possible that individuals may develop mental health conditions as a result.

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Some Mental Health Conditions Increase a Person’s Risk for Addiction Even More

As mentioned previously, studies show that individuals with mental health issues may be twice at risk for developing an addiction. But, those with severe mental health issues may be even more at risk for developing an addiction. For example, if a person struggles with anxiety and depression, they may be twice as likely to develop an addiction. But, a person diagnosed with schizophrenia or PTSD may be 4 to 5 times more likely than the average individual to develop substance abuse disorder.

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Co-occurring Disorders Require Specific and Focused Treatment

Unfortunately, because dual diagnosis individuals deal with two or more mental health issues at once, they are harder to treat. Dual diagnosis involves addiction and mental health disorders playing off of each other. Therefore, treatment must include identifying how each issue affects the other. 


Quality dual diagnosis treatment centers should develop strategies to help individuals realize when their mental health conditions play off one another. Since addiction is a different experience from person to person and mental health conditions can be a variety of different types, treatment must be individualized to become successful. This means that treatment works to identify and address the specific needs of patients, especially dual diagnosis patients.

The Advantage of Dual Diagnosis Treatment

When people have an unmanaged mood disorder, they often self-medicate, which leads to addiction. Getting a mood disorder treated can give you a major head start in overcoming addiction to drugs or alcohol. 


You may have found yourself doing the same thing – using drugs or alcohol to manage your moods and any kind of unpleasant symptoms associated with your disorder. If you felt ill and had no idea why, it can be really confusing and alarming, hence the reason many people turn to drugs or alcohol. Your diagnosis should put your mind at ease somewhat, knowing that there is a reason behind the way you were feeling.


When you are being treated for a dual diagnosis, you will take part of all the standards of rehab – counseling, therapy, group therapy, and doctor’s visits. However, you will also be treated separately for your mood disorder at the same time. There are many lifestyle modifications that can help manage anxiety, depression, or bipolar disorder. Simple activities like drawing or writing can help you to distract your mind and find creative outlets for your energy. Depending on your particular case, you may also be treated with non-habit-forming medication to help your symptoms even more.

What To Expect from a Dual Diagnosis

The first step of any rehabilitation program is detox. You or your loved one will go through about a week of withdrawals that will be closely monitored and managed by doctors, nurses, and therapists. They will make sure that you are as comfortable and safe as possible. As the drugs and/or alcohol begin to leave your body, they will start to treat both the mood disorder and the addiction.


No matter which dual diagnosis treatment center you choose, in the Bay Area or elsewhere, rehabilitation will be approached in a couple different ways:

Medical Dual Diagnosis Treatment

During dual diagnosis treatment, individuals will be monitored and evaluated by a doctor to see if there are any underlying medical conditions to take into account. For example, chronic pain could contribute to anxiety or depression, therefore also contribute to the addiction. If needed, pain will be treated during dual diagnosis treatment to assist with recovery.


From a medical standpoint, the addict might also be treated with medicine for their mood disorder. These medications are non-habit forming and designed to help ease the symptoms. When taken regularly, the medication will make your loved one feel much better, and the dose can be adjusted as treatment progresses.

Therapeutic Dual Diagnosis Treatment

During dual diagnosis treatment, individuals can attend group and individual therapy sessions, some designed to help with addiction, some the mood disorder, and some both. They will process situations and events in the past, and through various forms of therapy learn more about their addiction and why things happen as they do, so they can work to correct it in the future.


Here at Wellness Retreat Recovery, where we offer dual diagnosis treatment at our center in the Bay Area, we offer a wide variety of therapeutic treatments such as individual therapy, group therapy, and Conscious Recovery, a 12-week program that fuses the two together.

During dual diagnosis treatment, you will be given plenty of tools to move forward in life, manage your mood disorder, and not relapse with alcohol or drugs. After your treatment is over, it is up to you to implement these practices so that you continue to improve and get stronger day by day. If you are on medication, make sure that you set up a doctor for follow up after treatment so that they can continue to treat you. It is essential not to stop any medication management cold turkey, and to only make changes under a doctor’s supervision.

Wellness Retreat Recovery: A Top-Rated Dual Diagnosis Treatment Center in the Bay Area

Mood disorders can make it more difficult to quit abusing drugs and alcohol. While substances may seem to ease symptoms in the short-term, they only make things worse in the long run. Fortunately, with proper management of your anxiety, depression, or bipolar disorder you can learn to live a healthy lifestyle, and you will probably be surprised at how good you feel just from treatment.


In this sense, a dual diagnosis is a truly positive thing that can be the door to a better, sober life. For more information about our dual diagnosis treatment center in the Bay Area, please call Wellness Retreat Recovery at 888-821-0238.

Reach out for help!

Wellness Retreat Recovery is here to provide any information needed for new patients and loved ones struggling with addiction