Substance Use Disorders and Co-Occurring Mental Health Disorders

Many individuals have co-occurring disorders (CODs)—a combination of a substance use disorder (SUD) and a mental health disorder. Epidemiological studies of community and treatment samples and numerous studies of patients in mental health or addiction treatment programs show high rates of CODs. For example, the Epidemiological Catchment Area Study found that 37% of individuals with a lifetime alcohol use disorder and 53% with a drug use disorder met the criteria for a mental health disorder. SUDs were highest among those meeting the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) criteria for antisocial personality disorder, bipolar illness, schizophrenia, an anxiety disorder, or clinical depression. Alcohol use disorders were twice as high as drug use disorders in the Epidemiological Catchment Area Study. The National Comorbidity Study ...

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