If you or someone close to you is struggling with mental health and substance abuse disorders, dual diagnosis treatment can provide the necessary programs and services for recovery. But recovery also relies heavily on peer support, mutual aid groups, and a supportive community around you during your time and treatment and long after.
Types of Peer Support for Dual Diagnosis
Peer support for those in a dual diagnosis program comes in many forms. With several types of peer support, clients can find the programs and opportunities that best support their circumstances.
The Role of Peer Mentoring
Peer mentoring can take place in official dual diagnosis programs, group therapy sessions, and mutual aid groups. Peer mentoring plays an important role in building a supportive community around individuals going through recovery.
This aspect of treatment involves individuals further along in their recovery, offering mentorship to those who are brand new. People who have lived with the same mental health condition or addiction and sought professional treatment can often provide perspectives and actionable coping skills that might not be found elsewhere.
Peer support for dual diagnosis is an essential component of addressing quality of life. Studies indicate that individuals struggling with a mental health disorder can make many improvements with peer mentoring, such as:
- Improved social skills
- Increased self-confidence
- Better employment
- Decreased drug and alcohol use
- Less severe distress or psychiatric symptoms
- Improved quality of life
Mutual Aid Groups
Mutual Aid groups are any form of self-help group where individuals have a shared mental health or substance abuse issue. Members typically post their events without any professional involvement, so the meetings can be as Intense or as long as people desire, and there isn’t any interference when it comes to things like insurance.
Mutual aid groups are particularly important when it comes to building a supportive community. Members can be encouraged to contact one another, especially when they are experiencing a high risk of relapse or when mental health disorder symptoms might be more likely to manifest.
- Informal studies have found that people who participate in mutual aid groups are less likely to relapse compared to those in informal treatment
- Similarly, individuals who participate in formal treatment and mutual aid groups significantly postpone when and if that first relapse takes place
Today, there are over one million members of different mutual support groups across the United States. Common examples of mutual aid groups include 12-step programs like AA, CA, or NA.
Building a Supportive Community
In addition to peer support and mutual aid groups, it is essential for people who are in dual-diagnosis treatment programs to build a supportive community around them. This community will be there for them long after they leave a treatment facility.
Such a community usually starts with family involvement. Individuals are more likely to complete any type of mental health or substance abuse treatment program if they have support from their family. Facilities like Liberty House offer integrative and robust family therapy services so clients can rebuild relationships with those closest to them as they move through their residential program.
This also provides family members with education and tips on how to best communicate with their loved ones and recognize symptoms of things like the respective mental health conditions or hints of a potential relapse.
It also involves friends and a network of peers who can be there when times are difficult, when symptoms come back, when a medicine isn’t working anymore, or when a new job is lost.
Find Peer Support with Liberty House
Liberty House offers clients a custom-made experience for recovery with individualized dual diagnosis programs. Our Michigan dual diagnosis programs start with detox for substance abuse and transition clients into personalized inpatient programs complete with individual, group, and family therapy.
Dual diagnosis offers a deeper, more profound approach to treating the overall person, targeting co-occurring mental health and substance abuse issues. We focus heavily on family integration so that you can start building that network of people who love and support you. As you transition out of your residential program, we will also provide aftercare services that connect you to mutual aid groups and other forms of peer mentoring.
Liberty House can help now. Call us at 1-866-686-0319 for your free and confidential assessment.