Problematic use of drug and alcohol and mental health issues often go hand-in-hand. They have an inter-twined relationship that’s unique to every person’s situation.
Dual Diagnosis is the term used to describe this relationship – when someone is experiencing both mental health problems and drug or alcohol misuse.
Examples of a Dual Diagnosis might include:
- a mental health problem that has led to a person misusing alcohol and/or drugs
- alcohol and/or drug misuse that has led to someone developing a mental health problem
- alcohol and/or drug misuse that has worsened or altered the course of a person’s mental illness.
Dual Diagnosis at Windana
Windana is committed to addressing dual diagnosis and clients taking part in Windana’s Residential Withdrawal Program and Maryknoll TC have access the Dual Diagnosis Program.
Windana’s Dual Diagnosis Practitioners, Kay and Linda, work with clients and residents to help them understand the relationship between their drug and alcohol use and mental health, and link people to the support they need to help them with their recovery.
Treatment from a dual diagnosis perspective combines aspects of mental health and substance misuse treatment to support recovery as a whole, rather than treating challenges as separately occurring issues. Integrated treatment is often the most effective response when provided by the same practitioner, treatment team and/or organization.
More information and assistance
- DirectLine – visit https://www.directline.org.au/ or call 1800 888 236 for confidential counselling and referral, 24 hours, 7 days
- This 2-minute video is a great explanation of Dual Diagnosis – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5RbEotf0jqI
- Alcohol and Drug Foundation: https://adf.org.au/insights/what-is-dual-diagnosis/#:~:text=Dual%20diagnosis%20is%20a%20term,mental%20health%20and%20substance%20use
- Dual Diagnosis on the Victorian DHHS website: https://www2.health.vic.gov.au/mental-health/practice-and-service-quality/specialist-responses/dual-diagnosis
- Better Health Channel: https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/ConditionsAndTreatments/substance-abuse-and-mental-illness-dual-diagnosis
- Dual Diagnosis (Comorbidity) in AOD – a guide for practitioners: https://comorbidityguidelines.org.au/guidelines/