On their own, each of these disorders can have a detrimental impact on a person’s physical, mental, and spiritual well-being. When a person develops both PTSD and addiction, the potential for significant harm increases dramatically.
Fortunately, PTSD and addiction are treatable conditions. With appropriate professional treatment, people living with PTSD and addiction can enjoy healthier and more hopeful lives.
When a person has more than one type of mental health disorder, clinicians refer to the secondary conditions as “co-occurring disorders.” When a person develops a mental health disorder such as PTSD as well as a co-occurring substance use disorder (which is the clinical term for addiction), they are described as having “dual diagnosis.”
The co-occurrence of PTSD and addiction is a common dual diagnosis. Anyone living with co-occurring PTSD and addiction needs to be treated at a center prepared to identify and address the full scope of their needs.
Failing to effectively treat all co-occurring disorders can lead to a host of problems, including the return or worsening of symptoms. It can also lead to the onset of additional mental and physical health concerns.