What is Teen Co-Occurring Disorder Treatment?


Almost 60% of people who have a Mental Illness, such as Bipolar, Depression, or an Eating Disorder, also have a Substance Abuse Disorder.  In these cases, teen co-occurring disorder treatment becomes necessary.


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What It Looks Like


Many times, people with a Mental Health Illness end up abusing substances as an effort to treat their own symptoms and try to find relief; other times, people who abuse substances can eventually show symptoms of Mental Illness.


However, it’s not always easy to tell that there are multiple disorders present.  In order to see as clear and full a picture as possible of what’s going on, it’s important to keep in mind all the symptoms the person is experiencing.


As far as whether the Mental Illness or the Substance Abuse came first, it’s often difficult to tell.  However, once a person has both, the important issue is not necessarily identifying how the onset occurred, but just making sure both are treated.  Sometimes, in identifying and seeking to treat one Disorder, symptoms of another co-occurring disorder can be overlooked. This is obviously problematic and makes recovery even harder for the person, especially with regard to possible relapse, as their issues weren’t comprehensively addressed.


Teen Co-Occurring Disorder Treatment


Teen co-occurring disorder treatment must involve specific approaches and remedies for the mental disorder as well as necessary steps to address the substance abuse disorder.  It’s often beneficial if a person can get both treatments in the same location, which makes for a better chance at a more ideal and holistic approach, where the therapists and/or physicians are on the same page.


Depending on the severity of each condition and the specific substance at play, the order of priority, of what to address first, may differ.  With that being said, it’s important to first make sure the person is physically stable and provide oversight and care for any possible withdrawal symptoms or challenges that may occur.  From here, teen co-occurring disorder treatment essentially follows the general protocol for each individual disorder, while the therapist maintains careful sensitivity and awareness that both disorders are present.




How do I know if I have Co-Occurring disorders?


It may be hard for you to recognize what, if any, Disorders you may have, much less identify if they’re co-occurring.  So slow down, and just take one step at a time.  Your first step, if you’re experiencing any symptoms of a Mental or Substance Abuse Disorder, should be to talk to a therapist or other health care expert. Right now, you probably have a lot of questions, and the sooner you get help, the sooner you’ll start getting answers.


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