Most of the chronic drug abusers or drug addicts suffer from a severe mental disorder simultaneously. Drug treatment and medical experts call this aspect a co-occurring disorder or a dual diagnosis.
Few common serious mental disorders related to chronic drug abuse are bipolar disorder, manic depression, generalized anxiety disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, schizophrenia, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and antisocial personality disorder. Few of these disorders are related to more risk of drug abuse
Researchers at present are inspecting the most suitable method to treat drug abusers suffering from mental illness, and particularly the possibility of treating both conditions simultaneously which finally leads to better recovery.
In few cases, people having serious mental disorders (mostly undiagnosed) consume drugs to relieve their symptoms. This process is known as self-medicating. According to the American Psychiatric Association, individuals suffering from schizophrenia at times use substances like marijuana in order to reduce the disorder’s adverse symptoms (depression, apathy, and social withdrawal), to get engaged in auditive illusions and overly suspicious dreams, or to reduce the negative effects of their medication, like depression and restlessness.
In some cases, mental disorders happens by drug abuse. For instance, MDMA (3,4 methylenedioxymethamphetamine, commonly known as ecstasy), generates long-term deficiencies in serotonin function in the brain, resulting in mental disorders like depression and anxiety. Chronic drug abuse by adolescents at the time of developmental years is a specific concern as it can obstruct normal socialization (Learning the customs, attitudes, and values of a social group, community, or culture) and intellectual development and thus repeatedly leads to the development of mental disorders.
Chronic substance abuse and severe mental disorders may happen entirely independent of one another.