by Scott Methe, Ph.D.: For More Info, Go Here…
More than half of people with substance use disorders have serious psychiatric needs, yet only 1 in 4 people with mental health problems have substance use disorders. So how do addiction professionals ensure that clients with co-occurring disorders get the right treatment?
Addiction professionals rarely encounter clients who struggle only with substance use. First, more than half of clients who primarily present with substance addiction have co-occurring psychiatric disorders.
Second, substance use disorder (SUD) is a type of psychiatric disorder — due mostly to the destructive effect that substance use has on thinking, emotions, and behavior. Conversely, mental health disorders are not types of substance use disorders, meaning that fewer people who primarily struggle with mental illness have a co-occurring substance use problem.
Although mental health professionals are often prepared to treat SUD, addiction professionals are not always prepared to treat mental health problems. It is therefore critical that SUD clinicians understand the prevalence of mental health problems in clients with SUDs, and use this understanding to choose the right tools to identify the risk that the mental health condition poses to clients seeking substance use treatment.