Addicts may not realize that there are likely mental health concerns that must be addressed for the addiction to end for good. For many individuals battling addiction, the engagement in substance abuse is done to cope. If no other way of coping is effective or is known by the sufferer, it is more likely that they will continue to abuse substances for relief. 

The need to cope is more likely to occur with underlying mental health issues. If, daily, an individual is burdened with symptoms of mental illness, unresolved trauma, and other internal problems that interrupt daily life, the urge to engage in destructive coping mechanisms will be greater. This is another reason why mental health treatment is critical to addiction recovery. 

Moreover, a long history of relapse may also discourage an individual with addiction from continuing to fight for lasting recovery. They may genuinely believe they cannot do any better than continuing to use. Continue reading to learn more about why addicts need mental health services

Addicts need mental health services for lasting recovery

Whether or not an addict struggles with underlying mental health issues, they likely struggle with emotional regulation. Pursuing relief via destructive coping mechanisms like substance abuse is a self-sabotaging behavior. Self-sabotage stems from an ability to manage one’s emotions in healthy ways. 

With therapy, addicts can learn tools to manage their emotions and find relief without using coping strategies like substance abuse. By leaning on these tools and skills instead, they can avoid relapse and establish healthy coping mechanisms for life. Many mental health services integrate the use of skills to teach emotional regulation through modalities like dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). 

Dual diagnosis treatment is necessary

Receiving mental health services is necessary for addicts as there are likely underlying diagnoses that play a role in their continued substance abuse. With dual diagnosis treatments that focus on detox, relapse prevention, and emotional health, the addict can receive the help they need on every level. Mental health treatment also gives addicts a chance to learn what they may be diagnosed with and how to move forward with this new foundation to get the continued care they need for long-term recovery. 

Detox alone is not enough

Many addicts believe that after detoxing, they will just “get over” their addiction. While a supervised detox will eliminate drugs from the body and help the individual overcome withdrawal, the psychological issues related to the addiction are never addressed. Unless the issue is resolved with mental health services, the problem will likely continue. A treatment focusing on detox and coping strategies is the best way to maintain recovery. 

Seek lasting recovery with mental health services

Mental illness is a life-long reality for many addicts, but mental health services are necessary regardless. Without them, addicts never learn healthy coping skills. It is important to address the underlying issues that fuel addictive behaviors so the addict can build a toolkit of coping skills for maintained recovery.