President Trump has declared May 2017 as National Mental Health Awareness Month.
The proclamation recognizes the millions of American families affected by mental illness and calls to redouble our efforts to ensure that people who suffer can get the care and the treatment they need. The proclamation reports that nearly 10 million Americans suffer from a serious mental illness such a schizophrenia, bi-polar disorder, or major depression. It also points out that addressing substance abuse, addiction, and overdose is often critical to improving outcomes for the mentally ill since it is estimated that 8.1 million adults in America suffer from both mental illness and substance abuse. Plainly put, individuals with a mental health diagnosis are more likely to have substance abuse problems than the general population.
The link between mental illness and substance use disorders is well known and well established. 51% of individuals with bi-polar disorder have experienced drug or alcohol addiction in their lifetime. About half of those diagnosed with schizophrenia have substance abuse problems and 20% of individuals with major depression also have drug or alcohol problems. Additionally, there is a high correlation between suicide and substance abuse.
Experts agree that if you or a family member are suffering from what is called a co-occurring disorder (both a mental health and substance use disorder diagnosis), previously referred to as a dual diagnosis, then it is extremely important to pick professionals and providers who specialize in treating both mental health and substance use issues. Integrated treatment which includes collaboration across disciplines and treatment planning which addresses both the mental illness and the substance abuse is recommended by SAMHSA (Substance Abuse Mental Health Administration). Additionally, the use of evidence–based practices are now recognized as imperative in treating both mental health and substance use diagnoses.
New Bridge Foundation has long had a multi-disciplinary team that utilizes evidence-based practices. Additionally, New Bridge has received from the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities their highest accreditation for integrated mental health and substance abuse.
If you or someone you love has substance abuse problems please contact New Bridge Foundation today for a free assessment at (866) 772-8491 or email us here.