the dual diagnosis program
Addiction is one of the most dangerous diseases that affect people of different ages and social classes in any society. Therefore, it was necessary for us to find effective treatment methods and programs to treat drug addiction in proportion to the social, psychological, and health status of the addict. One of the best and most important of these treatment programs is the dual diagnosis program, which is based on treating addiction and treating the physical health of the patient along with his psychological diseases at the same time.
What is the Dual Diagnosis Program?
Dual Diagnosis, also known as “Associated Disorder”, is a medical term that refers to the presence of both an addiction or use disorder, as well as a psychological or mental state disorder in the addict at the same time. This may be a result of addiction to more than one type of drug with one or more mental disorders, such as obsessive-compulsive disorder, anxiety, severe depression, and schizophrenia.
Therefore, treating addicts with a double diagnosis is more difficult than treating those who suffer from only addiction, as patients who have other addictive diseases are more likely to commit suicide or harm themselves and those around them.
The treatment in these cases is more complex because many symptoms of mental illness and addiction are similar and depend on each other, which leads to their exacerbation to a dangerous extent. The inability to properly diagnose and treat addiction-related disorders leads to failure in treating the addict and it might put him at the risk of relapse again.
How long does the dual diagnosis program take for addiction treatment?
The duration of addiction treatment depends in general on the health status of the addict, whether psychologically, mentally, or physically. It also depends on the types of drugs that were used, the duration of abuse, and the severity of the accompanying psychological and mental disorders. But in most cases, the treatment period for addiction in the dual diagnosis program in Dar El-Taafy is 90 days.
The therapeutic steps in the dual diagnosis program
The dual diagnosis program works on treating the two disorders (addiction disorder – psychological and mental disorder) together simultaneously because treating one at the expense of the other will cause the patient to relapse. Treatment must be under full medical supervision so that withdrawal symptoms are treated within a specialized addiction treatment center and not at home until the double diagnosis is completely eliminated.
The dual diagnosis is treated at Dar El-Taafy Center through two main phases:
- A stage that targets mental imbalance in the pre-cognition phase, and this stage depends on controlling drug therapy, behavioral activation, and monitoring negative and positive symptoms in the patient. Through this stage, the comorbidities are diagnosed and whether they are caused by addiction as one of its symptoms, or whether they are the cause of addiction.
- The second stage targets the Cognitive Stage, and this stage lasts for a longer period of time because it aims to rehabilitate the client according to approved treatment programs, such as group and individual cognitive-behavioral therapy, different treatment groups, and the 12-step program for recovery from dual disorders. This stage helps the patient to accept specialized help from doctors and clinical therapists in treating substance dependence disorders and preventing relapses.
Features of Dual Diagnosis
- Access to medical care and close monitoring 24/7.
- Being in a healthy environment and the availability of treatment resources increases the support and encouragement of the addict and increases the chances of full recovery.
- Involving the patient during the analytical phase in the treatment plan, which gives him confidence, such as insight into the link between his disease and therapy.
- During the stabilization phase, assistance is provided to the patient who has been involved in the treatment by developing his motivation and participation in the treatment of his mental illness such as persuasion and motivation for change.
- Working on helping the patient and motivating him to acquire a lot of personal skills and providing social assistance in treating problems and errors, with the aim of controlling his disorders and striving to achieve his goals. It is known for being an effective treatment.
- Individual counseling sessions that focus specifically on co-occurring disorders.
- Complementary therapy includes therapeutic interventions that are appropriate for both disorders and that are optimally coordinated in terms of content and schedule.
Which types of addictions is the Dual Diagnosis Program suitable for?
The Dual Diagnosis Program is for addiction cases that have a comorbidity of addictive disorders with other psychiatric and mental disorders, which requires 24-hour monitoring and integrated pharmacological and psychological support.
Many studies also indicate that about half of the people suffering from drug addiction have some form of mental illness, and this places the dual diagnosis program at the top of the treatment programs for addiction treatment.