Mental Health and Substance Abuse in Connecticut

The government of Connecticut is very particular about mental health being a major issue within the state. People with a vast array of mental problems are being provided relief under the various initiatives that are run by the Connecticut government. These problems include schizophrenia, anxiety and panic disorders, bipolar disorders and the like. Figuring prominently among these mental illnesses is the issue of substance abuse in Connecticut.

The Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) of Connecticut has devoted a major share of its health provisions to the treatment of the twin disorders of mental illness and substance abuse. Mental illness is considered to be a biological as well as a psychological problem that is caused due to several problems triggered by factors in the person’s external surroundings. The state government considers that mental illness does not affect a particular niche of people but can affect anyone and that is the reason it has planned statewide initiatives for awareness of mental problems and provided means for people who need treatment from such conditions.

One of the main topics under discussion when speaking about mental health in Connecticut is that of substance abuse and intensive outpatient program. In fact, substance abuse in Connecticut is placed on the same pedestal as mental illnesses. The main reason for this kind of belief is that addiction is a progressive disorder that worsens with passing time and is very difficult to treat completely. The problem is such that it makes a recurrence even if it is treated through therapies such as detoxification and aftercare.

The reason behind this lies intensive outpatient program

In the fact that addiction is controlled by the person’s brain. Though it is the person’s body that takes the substance of addiction, the effect is definitely for the brain. It is in the brain that the euphoria of the addiction is felt. The central nervous system records the effects produced on it due to the consumption of the addictive substance and it signals to the person to continue this consumption. The state program for substance abuse in Connecticut understands quite emphatically that substance abuse is a mental problem, and that is the reason you will find mention of both these conditions on the same page in the state health website of Connecticut.

The state program also understands the need for treating these two kinds of problems simultaneously. The conditions are branded as co-occurring conditions on the state health website and methods to treat them simultaneously are indicated. The method that is followed is the dual diagnosis program. When two co-occurring problems are such that the treatment of one of them is liable to be affected by the presence of the other, the two problems cannot be tackled one by one. A simultaneous approach becomes necessitated. This is what the dual diagnosis provides. The DMHAS has in fact launched a very progressive Co-Occurring Disorders Initiative whereby these twin problems are looked after in the same breath, as they need to be done.

It is quite understandable that the rehabilitation centers needed for patients of mental illnesses who have taken up substance abuse will be different from the centers for patients who haven’t. The prominent body for setting up dual diagnosis treatment centers for mental illnesses and substance abuse in Connecticut is the Regional Network of Programs, Inc., abbreviated as RNP. RNP operates through Bridgeport. It conducts residential services within the state of Connecticut. There are two main residential rehabilitation centers for patients of mental illnesses who have taken up substance abuse. In these centers, they are provided all necessary treatment methods to cure them of their condition, including detoxification facilities followed by the necessary aftercare methods.

Dual Diagnosis: Treating Co-Occurring Disorders

When someone experiences mental illness coexisting with substance abuse, it is a case of dual diagnosis. Since it’s a combination of two or more disorders occurring simultaneously, symptoms can greatly vary from person to person. It is a broad category wherein patients seek out substance abuse in order to cope with life stressors such as mental health disorder.

A dual diagnosis patient experiences a range of symptoms, including anxiety, indifference, impulsiveness, recurring thoughts and other psychotic disorders. Although both personality disorder and alcohol/drug problems are treatable illnesses, many people don’t know how to handle the issue. For this reason, one needs to choose a good rehab center equipped with various treatment options that can help him come out of this debilitating condition. It is imperative to cure both the conditions. By doing this, a person increases his chances of complete recovery and return to a normal productive life.

Treatment of the mental condition and addiction therapy services 

If someone is struggling with substance abuse problems and the underlying mental condition, integrated intervention is the best treatment option. In this, the patient receives care for both substance abuse and mental disorder. The treatment for dual diagnosis may be time consuming and has higher chances of addiction relapse as compared to the treatment for a single disorder. These patients generally have a poor prognosis and overall health due to the presence of two chronic conditions.

A study published in Deutsches Ärzteblatt International by Euphrosyne Gouzoulis-Mayfrank and colleagues tried to investigate if the treatment of mental disorders can motivate patients to reduce substance abuse. They studied 100 dual diagnosis patients who voluntarily participated in the trial. Most patients were given a standard treatment with various therapeutic sessions and cognitive training. 

A few of them were offered a specific addiction therapy services 

The latter group was also given cognitive behavioral therapy, along with psychoeducational training. After the year-long study, the researchers concluded that patients receiving the disorder-specific treatment were also motivated to abstain from substance abuse, unlike conventional treatment. This method cannot provide a complete treatment for dual diagnosis; therefore, the above hypothesis needs to be further tested on a larger sample to realize its potential.

Effectiveness of inpatient rehab program

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 7.4 percent of all Americans were reported to struggle with co-occurring disorders in 2014. Patients diagnosed with dual diagnosis need a special kind of treatment, and inpatient rehab programs are the best option. In such programs the patients are kept away from distractions, and specialists assist them with behavioral therapies to ensure positive outcomes.

Regular care from trained physicians and customized therapies may largely help a residential patient to cope with the stress. A rehabilitation center offers an inpatient program which requires participants to live at the facility for the duration of the treatment. These programs are specifically designed to help addicts recover from the dual conditions through integrated interventions. In many instances, healthcare practitioners may stick to only behavioral therapy for patients who are uncomfortable taking medications, given their history of substance abuse.

If you or a loved one is struggling with dual diagnosis and seeking professional help, inpatient dual diagnosis treatment centers can offer you effective treatment. The Dual Diagnosis Helpline can guide you to the best inpatient dual diagnosis recovery centers in your area.