Addiction does not always fit into neat categories. In fact, most people who suffer from a substance use disorder regularly take more than one substance. Polysubstance abuse refers to the misuse of two or more substances taken in combination. There are several underlying risk factors for polysubstance abuse, but one of them is the presence of a co-occurring mental health disorder. When a mental health disorder and polysubstance abuse co-occur, treatment becomes more complicated and more important than ever. If you or someone you know is abusing multiple drugs while struggling with mental health issues, the best course of action is to seek help from a dual diagnosis treatment center.
Pennsylvania Adult & Teen Challenge (PAATC) treats those who suffer from co-occurring disorders, including those who chronically abuse multiple substances. To learn more about dual diagnosis and polysubstance abuse treatment options, reach out today by calling 844.442.8673 or submitting our simple online form.
What Is Polysubstance Abuse?
Polysubstance abuse is more complex than addiction to one thing because it involves the mixing of substances. A polysubstance abuser takes drugs to achieve desired results or to experience random effects. In the latter case, there is often no awareness of what has been taken. As a result, dependence on multiple substances taken in combination is extremely risky and challenging to treat.
The body of someone who abuses many substances at once regularly is under extreme assault. Consider the following scenario: you wake up and take your first drink to ward off withdrawal symptoms. To enable you to continue drinking as needed through the day and still function, you require the stimulant effects of a substance such as cocaine. The resulting anxiety that arises from this combination leads you to smoke some marijuana, and you end the day taking a Valium to help you get at least a little sleep.
Polysubstance abusers often experience serious effects such as:
- Respiratory depression
- Cardiac arrest
- Brain damage
- Organ failure
No matter what substances you’re using, you are at risk of severe side effects. Treating you will be difficult if you overdose on one or more of the substances in your body and end up in the emergency room but cannot explain or recall what you have taken.
Mental Health Disorders and Polysubstance Abuse
Substance use and abuse often begin when someone experiences the effects of mental health challenges. Mental health conditions that commonly co-occur with addiction and polysubstance use are:
- Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder
- Bipolar disorder
- Borderline personality disorder
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Eating disorders
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
If any of these scenarios sound familiar, seek polysubstance abuse treatment today.
Break the Polysubstance Cycle at PAATC’s Dual Diagnosis Treatment Center
A dual diagnosis treatment plan undertaken in a residential program is best for someone suffering from a polysubstance use disorder and an underlying mental health disorder.
Dual diagnosis treatment is a specialized form of substance abuse treatment that addresses the complex relationship between an individual’s mental health condition and their substance use disorder. Dual diagnosis treatment involves a holistic, integrated approach to addressing both conditions at the same time and in concert with one another. This type of treatment can be delivered in a variety of settings and takes a variety of different forms, but all dual diagnosis treatment methods seek to help clients achieve recovery from both their mental health condition and their substance use disorder.
Dual diagnosis treatment typically starts with an assessment that helps healthcare providers understand the extent and nature of each client’s disorders. Once the assessment is complete and treatment begins, a multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals works together to develop a customized treatment plan for each individual client. This may involve medication management, group and individual counseling sessions, family therapy, vocational support services, and more.
Meeting the Challenge
The complexity of these two (or more) co-occurring disorders combined with the medical challenges of detoxing from more than one substance makes finding the best treatment center your highest priority. At PAATC, we offer evidence-based dual diagnosis treatment.
Our decades of experience and our passion for helping people in recovery speak for themselves. Do not wait. Polysubstance abuse is not to be taken lightly. Combined with a co-occurring mental health disorder, it becomes even more dangerous for you and frightening for those who love you and understand the long-term risks to you.