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Dual Diagnosis Treatment

What is it? Can I Benefit From It? DoES ST. JUDE'S Offer it?

Dual Diagnosis Treatment EffectivenessHave you or a loved one go to alcoholism or addiction treatment and left that program with a worse substance use problem than you had going in? Was that further compounded by having received a mental health diagnosis and medications?

Have you or a loved one struggled more after receiving treatment than you did when you decided to go?

Does this result make sense to you? We can help.

What is Dual Diagnosis?

Dual diagnosis is the term used when someone is believed to have an underlying mood disorder in addition to a substance use issue. The problem is, ALL PEOPLE struggling with substance use problems also suffer from depression, trauma, anxiety, anger, mood swings, short attention spans, and difficulty concentrating, and other diagnosable emotional problems at one time or another. As a matter of fact, all people, in general, struggle with these emotional problems at some point in their lives because these are normal life problems that are now being diagnosed and treated unnecessarily and ineffectively. (Frances, p.30)

Addiction treatment centers don't use the dual diagnosis argument for your benefit, but because insurance companies are more likely to pay the center if you are diagnosed with a mood disorder. The bottom line is, it's about their bottom line... not you.

Depression and anxiety are normal, but their reasoning-based connection to substance use is voluntary, belief-based, and cultural. You can disconnect them. The Freedom Model has a chapter addressed to this very issue. It's entitled Learned Connections. This chapter will show you how to break down your learned connections and address your emotional issues separately from your substance use issues. This way you can, address your diagnosis and substance use issue separately and effectively. It is very important to note here that we are not anti-psychiatry, nor do we have an opinion on medication (more than 60% of our guests are on medications during their stay). The Freedom Model will help you take control, change your life, and choose what is best for you.

Contrary to what dual diagnosis treatment says you should do, you can't live a trigger-free life! No one can. Trauma, depression, anxiety, disappointment, setbacks, and challenges are all part of life.

There is no counselor, no pill, no support group, no sponsor, no doctor, and no external forces for change, that can fix your life for you. Only you can do that.

There are those who seek someone or something outside themselves to blame for their problems and they seem not to be interested in any other way of improving their lives.

The Freedom Model is not for them.

There are those who find comfort in a mental health diagnosis, support group meetings, multiple stints in rehab, and lifelong therapies.

The Saint Jude Program is not for them.

The Freedom Moel is for you if you are ready to:

  • Stop feeling and acting powerless;
  • Overcome depression, anxiety, and negative thinking patterns, and
  • Take full responsibility for your life, once and for all.

The Big Question: Why do "addicts" continue to use drugs even after severe negative consequences?

The answer: Their beliefs.

Some believe they can't stop. Some believe their past traumas cause their usage. Some believe feeling sad, angry, anxious, fearful, hungry, lonely, or tired makes them use. These beliefs are the real problem and it's these beliefs that can be changed with the right information. Also, people tend to do a rearview analysis. They say that they dislike drinking or drugging after they pay a consequence for their use, such as a DUI, or the loss of their family or job, etc. However, it is important to note that at the time that they used, they wanted the effects of the substance and they were motivated for that brief moment of happiness. It is important not to discount this obvious fact. The consequences come after the benefits of the high. And so, once the costs come full circle, the person then says they didn't want to get high. That of course is not true – at the time they did want to gain the benefits of the high and are now too ashamed to say so after the consequences become public. This is covered in some detail throughout The Freedom Model as well.

How does The Freedom Model address these faulty beliefs? Imagine your problems with addiction and your "underlying emotional issues" are a giant rubber band ball - they are all mixed together in one confusing mess. Trying to tackle these problems all at once, the way it is done in dual-diagnosis treatment, is overwhelming, ineffective, and unnecessary. The Freedom Model shows you exactly how you can disconnect your other problems from your substance use (i.e. addiction) and unravel that rubber band ball so you can fix each problem independent of the other. It's a common sense, logical, and effective approach so you can address your substance use problem completely and then address each emotional issue just as capably. Not only does this method help you to change your life and fix your problems today, but it provides you with a method to effectively tackle the struggles you will inevitably face in life's journey after you leave the retreat.

For those that have been part of the system and may already have one or more mental health diagnoses, The Freedom Model can help you, too. If you want the help of a licensed mental health provider to explore and reevaluate your diagnosis and medication, we can provide a referral and transportation for you to see a licensed mental health professional.

Thousands of people have overcome their substance use problems as well as their emotional problems using The Freedom Model. For more than 28 years, The Freedom Model has helped thousands of people to put their substance use problems behind them and effectively overcome other emotional issues without permanent mental health labels and costly lifelong aftercare and therapy.

Reference: Frances, A. (2013). Saving Normal: An Insider's Revolt Against Out-of-Control Psychiatric Diagnosis, DSM-V, Big Pharma, and the Medicalization of Ordinary Life. New York, NY: Harper Collins.

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