Living with Co-Occurring Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders
Overview: This community support group is designed to provide a space to discuss concerns and difficulties that occur in living with moderate to severe mental health illness and co-occurring substance use.Duration: OngoingTime: 90 minutes per session
Cost: FreeWho Should Attend:
Adults 18 or older who have a mental health diagnosis and deal with substance use issues
Family members, friends, or caregivers who are able to participate on a regular basis with the primary attendee
Research studies report that almost 10 million U.S. adults experience both mental illness and a substance use disorder.* The actual number may be higher. Mental health disorders can impact how a person thinks, feels and behaves. Some common symptoms include extreme changes of mood or perception, obsessions, fear or anxiety, difficulty engaging with others or staying focused to complete work or tasks, and difficulties with normal activies of daily living. Childhood abuse, neglect and family violence often negatively impact mental health.
People experiencing mental health challenges may turn to alcohol or prescribed or illegal drugs to self-medicate to alleviate symptoms. Yet substances can worsen the symptoms of mental illnesses. Goals of using drugs may be relaxation or sleep, but often what occurs is confusion, disorientation, memory loss, impaired coordination, sleep disturbances, increased temperature, depression; seizures and even coma. In addition, dealing with addiction becomes a further burden, adding to greater distress and a spiral into further drug use.
*National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2018, (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration).