You may notice your perception of reality differs from that of other people. However, you don’t know exactly what’s wrong. If you have schizophrenia, you may turn to drugs and alcohol as a way to self-medicate the confusion, pain, and discomfort of suffering from a problematic mental health illness. At Sunflower Wellness Retreat in Osawatomie, Kansas, we have a dual diagnosis program specifically designed to help clients with co-occurring addictions and mental health disorders.
What Is Schizophrenia?
Schizophrenia is a mental health disorder that interferes with your perceptions of life and disturbs your thinking patterns. It also affects the way that you interact with others around you. For example, some people with schizophrenia hear noises and voices that exist only in their heads. Alternately, this condition can make you paranoid, cause hallucinations, and give you a false feeling of invincibility.
Often, people with drug and alcohol addictions have some type of undiagnosed schizophrenia. The road to recovery might be a little longer for you than clients not dealing with mental health issues on top of substance use disorders. However, with patient therapists and counselors, you can receive a proper diagnosis and eventually receive the right medication to treat schizophrenia.
We recommend our residential treatment program for clients with co-occurring schizophrenia and drug addiction. You may need additional assistance from a trained psychiatrist to keep your schizophrenia under control following addiction recovery.
Next, learn about the symptoms of the main types of schizophrenia.
Four Main Types of Schizophrenia
Schizophrenia looks different for every person who has the disorder. However, there are four main types to consider, as follows:
- Paranoid schizophrenia: If you have paranoid schizophrenia, you may have paranoia and act on your fears. Some people with schizophrenia have shown up at the FBI or police station looking for protection from nonexistent stalkers.
- Catatonic schizophrenia: Someone with catatonic schizophrenia may appear paralyzed to other people. They have shut down mentally, physically, and emotionally and lose the drive to drink, eat, or go to the bathroom. After a few hours, this becomes a medical emergency.
- Undifferentiated schizophrenia: This type of schizophrenia is marked by a variety of symptoms such as confusion, failure to communicate with others, and irregular behavior such as not taking a shower or changing clothes.
- Schizoaffective disorder: If you have delusional thoughts and one or more symptoms of a mood disorder, you might have schizoaffective disorder. Symptoms include mania, depression, and hypomania.
The different types of schizophrenia require unique treatment expertise.
Addiction and Schizophrenia Treatment
In order to recover from drug and alcohol addiction, you also need to deal with your mental health disorder. This treatment may include a combination of group therapy, medication, psychotherapy (one-on-one therapy), and self-help groups.
Dual diagnosis programs treat both your drug and alcohol addiction and underlying mental health disorders. Your schizophrenia may have contributed to your addiction and vice versa. So, addressing one without the other may leave you vulnerable to cravings that trigger a relapse.
Antipsychotic medications may alleviate schizophrenic symptoms, which are due to an imbalance of certain brain chemicals. Additionally, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is often effective for clients with co-occurring addiction and schizophrenia. CBT can help find alternative ways of thinking that ease your mental health challenges.
Auditory hallucinations may persist even when you take antipsychotic medications. Therefore, it’s important to learn coping tools for these symptoms.
Seek Treatment at Sunflower Wellness Retreat
You can achieve recovery from all types of schizophrenia and addiction with the therapists and medical staff at Sunflower Wellness Retreat in Osawatomie, Kansas. Our alumni program allows you to stay in touch with your peers after recovery. If you have co-occurring disorders, please contact us at 855.730.8825 today to get started with your recovery.