Sometimes the mental problem occurs first. This can lead people to use alcohol or drugs that make them feel better temporarily. Sometimes the substance abuse occurs first. Over time, that can lead to emotional and mental problems.
Someone with a dual diagnosis must treat both conditions. For the treatment to be effective, the person needs to stop using alcohol or drugs. Treatments may include behavioral therapy, medicines, and support groups.
NIH: National Institute on Drug Abuse
- Alcohol and Other Psychiatric Disorders (National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism)
- Bipolar Disorder and Alcoholism: Are They Related? (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
- Co-Occurring Disorders (Mental Health America)
- Dual Diagnosis: Substance Abuse and Mental Illness (NAMI)
- Mental Health Treatment Program Locator (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration)
- National Institute of Mental Health
- Should You Talk to Someone About a Drug, Alcohol, or Mental Health Problem? (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) - PDF Available in Spanish
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
- Substance Abuse Treatment Facility Locator (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration)