Dual Diagnosis Treatment

At Nexus, we recognize that drug and alcohol addiction is commonly associated with underlying or untreated mental health disorders. Anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, trauma, ADHD, and other psychiatric disorders frequently coincide with an individual’s substance abuse. These co-occurring disorders may have developed as a result of drug and alcohol use, or may have been a factor in why an individual began using in the first place. Regardless of when the disorder manifests, it’s crucial that they be addressed during substance abuse treatment in order to give clients the best chance at recovery. Otherwise, clients risk returning to their communities without tools to deal with any underlying mental health disorders, and may find themselves turning to drugs or alcohol as a way to self-medicate.


Since drug and alcohol addiction is a chronic brain disease, individuals are more likely to see long-term success if they participate in a treatment program designed by medical and mental health professionals. At Nexus, we coordinate with physicians and therapists who perform a thorough assessment of new clients in order to determine if any underlying mental health disorders are present. If there is any co-occurring disorder, we coordinate with the appropriate professionals to ensure it is treated with the same level of care and expertise as an individual’s addiction.

Some of the modalities used in dual diagnosis treatment include:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
  • Motivational Enhancement Therapy
  • Multidimensional Family Therapy
  • Psychodynamic Therapy
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy
  • Gestalt Therapy
  • Eye Movement Desensitization and
    Reprocessing (EMDR)
  • Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT)
  • Art Therapy
  • Surf Therapy
  • Music Therapy
  • Yoga
  • Meditation and Mindfulness

In addition to the initial assessment, we coordinate care to ensure clients continue to be monitored by mental health professionals throughout their stay. If a mental health disorder becomes apparent once an individual has time away from drugs or alcohol, our treatment team is able to address it immediately.

If you are considering treatment for yourself or a loved one, call us today.

Individualized Care

At Nexus, treatment for every client will be customized to meet his or her individual needs. By tailoring treatment to the individual, we give our clients the best chance of success as they transition back into their families and communities.

Why Choose a Dual-Diagnosis Treatment Center?

In the realm of addiction treatment, dual-diagnosis has become increasingly popular because of its necessity. Dual-diagnosis treatment focuses on treating both the addiction and any diagnosed or undiagnosed mental health disorders. Studies show that 6 out of 10 people in addiction treatment also struggle with a co-occurring mental health disorder. In some cases, the mental health disorder propelled the addiction, while in others, it developed as a result. Regardless of which came first, it is important to treat both equally to reduce the risk of relapse and improve the recovery experience.

There is no standard path in which a dual diagnosis is identified, but they often exist and go undiagnosed for long periods of time. Mental health conditions can be confused for symptoms of the addiction, leading a person to not receive adequate treatment for both conditions. It can be difficult to identify the presence of a co-occurring disorder because symptoms can appear to be related to the addiction itself. Rather than focusing solely on treating the symptoms of addiction, exploring a person’s history and experiences can help uncover the catalysts. In many cases, addiction develops as a means of self-medication for an existing condition or as a way to escape painful experiences. An initial assessment, therapy, and intensive care can help identify the need for dual-diagnosis care and provide comprehensive treatment when needed.

The Difference with Dual-Diagnosis Care

Dual-diagnosis care encourages a holistic approach to recovery. Rather than strictly utilizing traditional therapy options, dual-diagnosis may employ new forms of treatment, experiential therapy, and other individualized approaches to provide therapeutic benefits in nontraditional settings. This allows therapists to observe clients in environments in which they let down their guard, respond naturally, and explore the world around them. It can provide useful insights into a client’s needs and help propel treatment in the right direction.

The treatments mentioned above used in dual-diagnosis are further explained below:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT): CBT focuses on changing clients’ unproductive, negative thoughts through developing healthy coping mechanisms and focusing on problem-solving so that clients are empowered to change their circumstances.
  • Motivational Enhancement Therapy (MET): MET helps clients accept the need for help in treatment by resolving ambivalence and encouraging self-motivating statements early in sessions.
  • Multidimensional Family Therapy (MDFT): This form of treatment is family-centered and primarily used to help adolescents cope with the problems that have developed as a result of substance abuse.
  • Psychodynamic Therapy: This treatment is often used in patients who have depression, who have lost a sense of meaning in their lives, and in cases where a person has difficulty forming meaningful relationships with others.
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT): DBT focuses on helping clients who suffer with borderline personality disorders and other mood disorders. It works by helping clients manage painful emotions and learn how to decrease conflict in their lives.
  • Gestalt Therapy: Gestalt therapy focuses on personal responsibility and exploring what is happening in the present in order to work on developing solutions.
  • Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR): EMDR is used to help those who have experienced trauma. When asked to recall traumatic incidents, it diverts the client’s attention to reduce distress and makes the experience less emotionally upsetting to explore.
  • Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT): REBT helps clients change irrational beliefs, resolve emotional or behavioral problems, and ultimately feel more fulfilled.
  • Art Therapy: Art therapy allows clients to express themselves through a medium that requires no words. It can be a powerful way to relieve stress and express oneself in a healthy way.
  • Surf Therapy: Surf therapy challenges clients to take on a physical activity they may have no experience with. In the water, they respond naturally to stimuli, allowing therapists to observe behaviors and provide real-world context to coping mechanisms for stressful situations.
  • Music Therapy: Creating, writing, or playing music provides a valuable outlet in treatment and can help a person cope with stressors in a healthy way.
  • Yoga: Yoga encourages inward focus, inviting clients to clear their minds, focus on their breathing, and engage their bodies and minds simultaneously.
  • Meditation and Mindfulness: Meditation and mindfulness encourages self-awareness and self-reflection. The ability to clear one’s mind from the noise of daily life can provide inner peace and focus that is valuable in recovery.

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