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The Importance of Integrated Treatment for Co-Occurring Disorders

When a patient walks through our doors at JourneyPure, we know there is more to their story than the substance abuse that has led them here. There is a person that needs to be healed, rejuvenated and rediscovered. Statistics show that they’ve most likely experienced some type of trauma or they are struggling with a mental health disorder such as depression, bi-polar disorder or post-traumatic stress disorder, that made them more susceptible to substance abuse. Or quite possibly, the substance abuse has brought about symptoms of a mental illness.

A 2014 report issued by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health revealed an estimated 7.9 million people have co-occurring disorders, meaning in addition to abusing drugs or alcohol, they are also coping with mental health issues. Sadly, the report also concluded that only seven percent of people with co-occurring disorders are treated for both.

Because someone is facing substance abuse problems and a psychiatric disorder doesn’t mean one caused the other to occur. Drug and alcohol abuse can lead to mental illness just as mental illness can trigger a person to turn to drugs or alcohol to ease the pain of their psychological issues. The study also concluded: Among adults aged 18 or older in 2014 with past year SUDs (substance use disorders), the percentage of adults who had co-occurring AMI (mental illness) in the past year was highest among those aged 26 to 49 (42.7 percent) than among those aged 18 to 25 (36.0 percent) or those aged 50 or older (35.6 percent).

JourneyPure’s Chief Clinical Officer Dr. Sam MacMaster, knows the importance of providing integrated services in treating co-occurring disorders and leads a staff that is second to none in the industry. JourneyPure’s approach to treating co-occurring disorders is based on the Integrated Dual Diagnosis Treatment Model.

“What they found was if you take people with chronic psychiatric issues and addressed in a multi-disciplinary team, addiction and mental health issues, and what they call wrap around services, people tend to do better,” said MacMaster of the model.  “And that was unheard of at that point. Either you needed psychiatric services or addiction treatment. You stabilized on one side or the other.”

At JourneyPure, patients in residential treatment are assigned to a primary care physician and psychiatrist. JourneyPure’s clinical teams are a combination of recovery coaches that delve into the 12 steps and social workers that understand mental health. Our highly-trained, compassionate clinicians provide individual plans to meet each patient’s needs.

Everything is intentional. The beautiful setting at each facility provides a peaceful backdrop for the recovery process. A holistic approach, utilizing a number experiential therapies, including equine, adventure and songwriting therapies, are designed to reduce patient stress and provide an outlet for them to connect to their inner-self and others in a healthy, positive way. And one year of continued support at each patient’s fingertips using the JoureyPure Coaching App is the final piece to ensure a smooth transition and successful recovery.

It’s truly a healing process for the mind, body and soul.

Contact us today if you or a loved one are struggling with substance abuse. Our team of experts are here to help.




NIDA (2011). Comorbidity: Addiction and Other Mental Disorders. Retrieved May 1, 2017, from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/comorbidity-addiction-other-mental-disorders