Getting treatment for alcohol abuse or addiction is about much more than abstaining from drinking. If you or someone you know has a problem with alcohol, the issue likely runs much deeper. There are often mental and emotional triggers that cause people who struggle with alcohol abuse to drink. This is especially true of people who struggle with alcoholism and also have a mental health disorder. Because mental health plays an essential role in an addict’s quest for recovery, there are certain questions substance abuse counselors will generally ask all clients about their mental health.
Do You Ever Experience a Depressed Mood?
Some people drink because they view alcohol as a means of easing anxiety and relieving stress. An addiction counselor will likely ask if you believe you are currently experiencing depression or if you believe you have observed signs of depression anytime in the past and especially since you began drinking. If you experience situational or chronic depression, addressing the underlying cause of the depression can help the treatment center curb your alcohol abuse.
Do You Have a Family History of Addiction?
Many researchers believe people whose parents struggled with addiction are more likely to find themselves struggling with substance abuse or addiction. Therefore, a treatment center specialist will likely want to know if you have a family history of alcohol or drug abuse and addiction. Having this information can help your program counselors better evaluate the role of family dynamics and parental alcohol or drug abuse has played in your mental health over time.
Have You Ever Been Diagnosed With a Mental Health Condition?
An addiction specialist will immediately want to know if you have ever been diagnosed with a mental condition. A past diagnosis may give clues to underlying triggers that cause you to struggle with drinking today. People who have a history of mental health conditions also sometimes self-medicate with alcohol when they experience symptoms of that indicate the mental health condition may require further management through therapy or medical intervention.
Do You Currently Take Medicine for a Mental Health Condition?
Alcohol treatment centers need to know if you are prescribed to take other drugs that may affect your mental state and overall health. In addition for determining whether you have any potential contraindications that may affect your treatment plan, treatment center clinicians will determine whether your current prescribed dosage is effective. People who have a co-occurring mental health condition sometimes use alcohol or other drugs when they do not follow the prescribed dosing instructions or when their current dose is ineffective. Your doctors at the treatment center will work with you to treat the co-occurring mental health disorder in addition to providing services to help you overcome your tendency to abuse alcohol.
Do You Ever Experience a Desire to Cause Bodily Harm or Destroy Property?
Some people who abuse alcohol also struggle with anger management and violent urges. Your treatment center will care about your own safety as well as the safety of others at the center. If your counselor determines that you have an issue with violence or anger, you will likely be required to receive counseling to address the underlying cause of the issue by teaching you how to process your anger is a safer, more productive manner. If you anger is caused by a mental health condition that requires medication, a clinician will work with you to incorporate treatment into your alcohol rehab plan.
Diagnosis and Treatment for Co-Occurring Mental Health Conditions
Once you decide to enroll in a particular alcohol rehab center, your intake process will most likely include a mental health evaluation. During the mental health evaluation, addiction specialists will conduct a screening some of the most common co-occurring mental health conditions including bipolar disorder, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and other personality disorders. If you have been diagnosed or suspect you may have a mental health condition, do not feel embarrassed to discuss your mental health with your intake specialist.
Letting the treatment center know about your mental health concerns will allow the staff and clinicians to create a recovery plan that is more likely to help you succeed at your recovery goals. We are available to answer all your questions about mental health, alcohol, and drug abuse. Call us today at 833-364-0736 to speak with one of our addiction specialists.