Key Things To Know About Dual Diagnosis What is Dual Diagnosis?

Dual diagnosis is also referred to as co-occurring disorders. It is a term that describes a person who is suffering from a mental illness and addiction at the same time. People often use drugs in order to reduce the symptoms of a mental illness. However, drugs and alcohol can worsen mental illness symptoms.

How Common is Dual Diagnosis?

It is estimated that 7.9 million people in the United States have dual diagnosis. Half of these people are men. Twenty-five percent of people who have a mental illness also have an addiction.

Factors That Contribute to Dual Diagnosis


Genes can affect the way a person’s body reacts to substances. People who have a family history of mental illness or addiction are more likely to develop one themselves.


Some studies suggest that people who identify as risk takers are more likely to develop dual diagnosis.

Brain Chemistry

Dopamine is a chemical messenger that the brain releases. Some studies suggest that people with low levels of dopamine in their bodies may be more prone to addiction. An addiction or mental illness can also affect dopamine levels.

Symptoms of Dual Diagnosis

The symptoms of dual diagnosis can vary. However, people typically exhibit the following symptoms.

  • Sudden changes in behavior

  • Withdrawing from family members and friends

  • Engaging in risk-taking behaviors

  • Having a high tolerance for drugs and withdrawal symptoms

  • Feeling like one needs the drug in order to function

Dual Diagnosis Treatment Minneapolis

There are several ways that dual diagnosis can be treated. Every mental illness and addiction is different, so they will have to be treated differently. However, treatment typically includes detoxification, therapy and rehab. Medications may also be used.

If you are in need of dual diagnosis treatment in Minneapolis, then you will need to call River Ridge.

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