Co-Occurring Disorders Treatment

Seeking help for co-occurring disorders? Contact us or continue reading to learn about co-occurring disorder therapies and how Transcend can assist you.

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Mental health issues have been a longstanding battle for a lot of people. However, most sufferers' path to rehabilitation has been difficult to undertake, especially if it is coupled with underlying diseases. Co-occurring Disorder is when an individual suffers from two or more illnesses--usually a pre-existing mental affliction with substance abuse or process addiction.

It is said that approximately 8.1 million American adults live with co-occurring disorders in 2015 alone. Without comprehensive treatment and assistance to these patients, their overall health and wellbeing may worsen over time. Recovery service providers, such as Transcend Recovery Community, offer relief and support to troubled individuals who have long suffered from these debilitating conditions. They mainly focus on providing supplemental counseling and guidance for patients with co-occurring disorders such as,  anxiety disorder, addiction, and alcohol recovery, emphasizing post-rehabilitation mentoring.

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What Are Co-Occurring Disorders?

Co-occurring disorders are two or more intertwined conditions within an individual. Often, diagnosis is quite tricky as there might be a tendency to overlap each other, potentially masking symptoms of other existing mental illnesses.

Co-occurring disorders comprise of these two conditions:

  1. Substance use disorder - when an individual has grown dependent on drug use and alcohol, interfering with their ability to function properly at work, school, or in maintaining social relationships.
  2. Mental health disorders - often existing alongside substance abuse or dependence, chemically-dependent patients suffer from mood disorders. These coexisting conditions may aggravate one's state and lead to schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorder and need immediate care and management, such as anxiety disorder treatment.

In 2019, close to 10 million young adult Americans were diagnosed with co-occurring disorders. Sadly, an estimated 742,000 people belonging to this group have sought medical attention.

Some common symptoms for people suffering this are the following:

  • A shift in eating habits.
  • Extreme mood swings.
  • Difficulty in focusing/thinking.
  • Heightened irritability.
  • Loss of perception with reality (hallucination, paranoia, and even delusion).
  • Suicidal thoughts or ideas.
  • Participation in risky or promiscuous behavior.
  • Isolation from friends and loved ones.
  • Loss of interest in pursuing hobbies or interests compared before.

Does Transcend Recovery Community Offer Co-Occurring Disorders Treatments?

Transcend Recovery Community provides an extensive array of rehabilitative programs and services, including spiritual and formative guidance for individuals who are suffering with co-occurring disorders. Its programs specializing in mental wellness helps people living with mental health problems cope and function better and hopefully improve their overall wellbeing.

Transcend Recovery understands the needs of each suffering from co-occurring disorders, assuring that all patients are treated with the utmost respect and care that they rightfully deserve. Individuals feel welcomed and supported as they continue their journey to recovery with its facilities and professionals' help.

Even post-therapy, people may avail themselves of  after-care programs courtesy of Transcend’s partner establishment, The Heights Treatment, specializing in inpatient rehabilitation treatment, to ensure continued and consistent recovery.

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What Causes Co-Occurring Disorders?

The development of co-occurring disorders may vary depending on a variety of factors. Some usual factors that may lead to fully-realized co-occurring episodes include:

Environmental Triggers

Patients may have suffered deep trauma from the past, such as sexual or physical abuse. Stress from work or an abusive relationship may also contribute to an individual developing this condition.

Social Status And Poor Quality Of Life

While this does not necessarily contribute to developing mental health issues, the burden of poverty and, to some extent, an extreme financial loss might be too much for other people to deal with and may affect their overall mental wellbeing.


One's genetic history may also contribute to potentially having co-occurring disorders in the long run. Some people have a particular gene that increases their susceptibility to developing a co-occurring condition. An individual's gene may also influence how they respond to a specific drug--primarily if it draws a pleasant feeling when using it.

Mental Illness

Some pre-existing mental conditions may aggravate one's state that would prompt them to resort to substance abuse. Certain studies find that some people resort to drugs or alcohol as a way to self-medicate.

Substance Abuse

People who are continuously using drugs or alcohol are at higher risk of developing mental problems in the future.

Who Is At Risk Of Developing Co-Occurring Disorders?

Co-occurring disorders may happen to anyone, but people who already have pre-existing mental health conditions are susceptible to these. Additionally, individuals who have substance abuse issues or have grown dependent on drugs may eventually form this condition in the long run.

At present, more and more people have identified themselves to have suffered from co-occurring disorders.

American youth who have undergone a significant depressive episode were twice likely to begin drinking or taking drugs than their peers who have not experienced this. Meanwhile, 7.7 million American adults have co-occurring disorders. 37.9% who have substance use disorders also had a mental illness, while 18% of those who had mental illness had substance use disorders coinciding with their condition.

There is no fixed order in which the diseases are diagnosed. Since it is entirely unclear which develops first, mental illness and substance abuse influence one another. Therefore, all patients must undergo dual diagnosis to ascertain the best option for their case.

Why Would Someone With A Mental Health Condition Abuse
Drugs Or Alcohol?

two ladies on a hike while on a drug addiction retreat

People living with mental health issues may experience worsening of their quality of life, especially for those who have no access to proper treatment facilities or do not respond appropriately to therapy and medication. When this happens, further problems arise, such as fear and anxiety.

To combat these symptoms, individuals suffering severe mental illness would resort to drugs and alcohol to numb their feelings and provide them temporary relief. However, these substances contribute to the worsening of their mental state--compounding their symptoms and deteriorating their physical health over time.  

People dealing with psychotic conditions, such as schizophrenia, are more prone to substance and drug use because of their altered mental states. For instance, tobacco use is more common in schizophrenic patients due to the rewarding effects of smoking and the reduction of other symptoms.

That is why it is crucial to have ample support, such as seeking addiction recovery for specific cases where their condition might be complex.

What Types Of Treatment Are Effective For People With A Co-Occurring Disorder?

The treatment for people suffering from a co-occurring disorder may vary. However, patients may undergo dual diagnosis treatment, most especially if they experience multiple co-occurring disorders.

Rehabilitation facilities and specialists recommend an integrated treatment program to address a person's substance use issues while undergoing therapy for their particular mental health conditions. Experts advise the patient first to treat and ultimately stop their substance use before proceeding to medication administration. The reason for this is to not interfere with their prescription and avoid any side effects that may arise.  

Patients may also opt for sober living arrangements. By doing so, they can get support from a nurturing community that can help them work their way through substance abuse. They can also form trust and a deeper bond with the residents and specialists within the housing facility to achieve sobriety longer-term.

Other therapy methods that may be looked into when treating co-occurring diseases would be:

  • Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) - aims at helping modify and improve destructive practices and behaviors.
  • Dialectal behavioral therapy (DBT) is used to remove "self-harm" tendencies in a patient, such as suicidal thoughts and urges.

Contingency management (CM)  - rewarding patients for positive behavior and for enforcing healthy habits.

Are There Co-Occurring Disorder Treatments Near Me?

Transcend Recovery Community offers comprehensive recovery and mental wellness programs in various states that may help those who battle with co-occurring disorders. Its locations in major populated areas, such as Los Angeles, Houston, and New York, ensure that patients receive the proper care and support needed for their continued growth and recovery.

Its robust community of clients and staff ensures you that you are well taken care of as you work your way through recovery. Moreover, its dedicated team of professionals and rehabilitation specialists considers your particular needs to make you feel safe and comfortable during your entire therapy.

Transcend also offers relapse prevention guidance and services to aid you in your continued growth and sobriety.

Los Angeles

Come join us at one of our beautiful Los Angeles sober living homes. There is a vibrant recovery community at Transcend waiting to support you.
11150 W. Olympic Blvd. Suite 760-A, Los Angeles CA 90064


Imagine making new friends and living with purpose in the exciting, beautiful, and peaceful Houston Heights neighborhood in Texas.
945 Harvard St, Houston, TX 77008, United States

Discover more on how Transcend can help you transform your life and get you back on track. Talk to a recovery specialist today at 800-208-1211 to find out more on how you can get support for your co-occurring disorders.

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Our Admission Specialists have walked in your shoes and are here to help. Please use our extensive knowledge of the treatment industry to find the right program for you. We are here to help no matter what your situation is.

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