Those with addictive personalities are likely to struggle with multiple addictions. The thing that is interesting here is that the addictions do not have to be related at all. For example, someone with a drug addiction may also be addicted to a certain food. Those with alcohol addictions may also have an odd addiction to collecting things. Regardless of the combination, there is help available to treat them all at once.
Concentrate on the Bigger Addiction First
While it is equally important to treat all of your addictions, it starts with addressing the biggest or most harmful first. The string of addictions likely started with the one that harms you the most such as drugs or alcohol. While most dual addictions are the combination of drugs and alcohol, one has more precedence over the other. Once you learn how to manage triggers and temptation from your primary addiction, warding off the temptation for the secondary addiction is much easier. In some cases, the same scenarios exist for both addictions.
Learn to Manage Triggers
Triggers refer to the things or situations that make you want to use or drink. Learning to manage and surpass these difficult situations is crucial. This takes time, so have patience. For some, a stressful job or financial problems lead to heavy drinking to mask the worry and sadness. Not only does the money spent on alcohol make it worse, the problem is still there when you become sober.
Rehab teaches you that you should use the stress or prior trigger and turn it into something constructive. This can mean going to exercise, completing a home repair, or taking up a hobby. This turns the negative feelings into something constructive that has a positive end result. During counseling, you will take time to analyze what makes you want to use and how to recognize it in advance before relapse.
Continued Therapy after Rehab
It is especially important for those with a dual diagnosis to continue with aftercare following the completion of their rehab program. The reason for this is that managing multiple addictions on your own is nearly impossible. Nothing says that you can’t do it, but having help to do it guides you through the difficult patches much easier. There will be different triggers, temptation will be everywhere, and it is going to be hard to walk away and not use or take a drink, or continue with the unhealthy and addictive behaviors of your past. Counselors work with you as long as you need them to manage these multiple additions.
The word addiction is a broad spectrum term. Most members of society associate with alcoholics and drug addicts. The fact of the matter is, not all addicts even drink or use drugs. There’s rehab available for every type of addiction, traditional and non-traditional. While in rehab it is likely that an undiscovered addiction will surface. This is the best time to tackle it and make it part of the past to move onto living a happier life.