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Mental Health and Addiction

It has been found that addiction and mental health disorders are closely linked and that one does not directly cause the other. This being said it is a fact that the abuse of substances such as alcohol and drugs can be the cause of psychiatric reactions and can make mental illness symptoms even worse.

While mental illness and substance abuse are connected, all we know for sure is that is both can cause severe adverse effects to the user. Although mental illness and substance abuse are very visible to a professional, it may not be apparent to the patient who, until they have accepted their condition, will deny having any such problem.

In this article, we will explain what mental health problems are, what can trigger them and how mental health and addiction tend to work hand in hand with each other to destroy lives.

What is a Mental Health Problem?

Mental health much like physical health needs to be looked after and taken care of in all human beings. Mental illnesses may vary in severity, but scientists have still not established why mental illness and substance abuse are often found together in the same patient.

When a person is in good mental health then they can think, react, and feel things in the ways that are needed to live a normal life. Sometimes a person may go through a period of poor mental health due to sickness or trauma. This can feel even worse than any actual physical illness, making life and daily activities very difficult to cope with.

Mental health issues are a common occurrence and are found in people all over the world. These mental health issues can range from issues such as depression and anxiety to more severe problems such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

Factors Leading to Mental Illness and Substance Abuse

Mental illness is a condition in which a person experiences a severe disorder in the way that they think. In other words, mental illness is diagnosed when a person’s mental state is not in its standard form or as it should be to qualify as a normal state of mind.

There are many mental illnesses that people suffer from. These can include but are not limited to:

  • Depression and anxiety

  • Eating Disorders
  • Schizophrenia Disorder
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
  • Dissociation
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Mood Disorders

Mental illness together with substance abuse happens when a person starts to take prescription medication, alcohol, or drugs without a prescription to attain the desired feeling to block out any negative feelings that they may be experiencing due to their mental illness.

Unfortunately, once the person has started to continuously use the substance, they begin to find that they cannot function without regular doses.

A cognitive-behavioral therapy program is a primary therapy for depression by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. A cognitive-behavioral treatment program at The Retreat of Atlanta will assist you in overcoming the issues without the use of psychiatric drugs.

Substance Abuse and Mental Illness Triggers

Mental health problems can be triggered by various factors such as genetics, addiction to illicit substances, and traumatic events.  Sometimes patients who abuse substances for a long time start to gradually develop mental illnesses or psychological problems.

Some Other Triggers of Mental Illness can be:

  • Stress and anxiety
  • Abuse
  • A family history of mental illnesses

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy at The Retreat of Atlanta

For the benefit of our patients, our residential drug care program provides high-quality CBT services. Our treatment plans contain the following components:

Group Therapy

This solution involves using a group of individuals in the facility who are experiencing the same issues. This approach aims to encourage patient bonding by having them speak about their issues with one another.

Motivational Interviewing

Therapists urge patients to discuss the steps they should take to improve their actions for the better. Since the patient generates their measures, they are simpler to execute.

Trauma Focus

The patient discusses the traumatic experience with the therapist. Talking about it will help you deal with the pain.


Following the procedure, our Retreat of Atlanta workers will contact the patient. It is beneficial to modify their actions so that it is consistent with their proposals.

A cognitive-behavioral therapy program may assist people in changing their thinking patterns. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is a form of talking therapy that helps people manage their problems.


Our drug recovery treatments at The Retreat of Atlanta will address a wide range of physical and mental health issues. It is, however, widely used to treat anxiety and depression.

All About the four C’s of Addiction

The four C’s of addiction was created to distinguish the disease into different parts that are easier for patients and family members to understand.

The four C’s of addiction can be divided into:

  • Compulsion
  • Cravings
  • Consequence
  • Control

The four C’s of addiction has become a very useful tool in describing and identifying the stages of addiction. We know a person is battling with addiction when they:

Have a compulsive urge to seek out drugs, have cravings for drugs, continue to use drugs despite the consequences that it can have on their lives, and altogether lose control of their drug use which makes them start to feel helpless.

When all of these symptoms are present, we can confirm that a person has an addiction or substance abuse disorder and will need professional intervention to detox and recover safely.

Here is some more information and guidance to help you to understand the four C’s of addiction:


Compulsion can be explained as an irresistible urge or desire to do something even if it is not good for your well-being.

This compulsive behavior is intense and extremely overwhelming, and most patients will not be able to control the feelings of compulsion that are leading them to take addictive substances and in turn start exhibiting behavioral problems.


Cravings for drugs are so strong that they can often mimic physical and essential needs such as hunger or thirst. These cravings can become so intense that they will cause a lack of appetite, insomnia, and even hallucinations especially if a patient is trying to stop using the drug and attempt a detox.

When a patient is unable to get their craving satisfied then can become irritated and anxious and cannot think of anything else besides satisfying their craving.


This C which stands for consequences refers to when a person continues to use drugs despite knowing and being aware of the negative consequences that it is bringing into their lives.

These consequences can impact a person’s physical, mental, emotional, and social health not to mention the negative consequences that it will have on their ability to get and keep a job and pay the bills.

These consequences can be devastating and lead to homelessness, unemployment, and even unlawful actions to fund their drug habit.

Other consequences can also include:

  • Feelings of being hungover
  • Brain Fog
  • Forgetfulness
  • Inability to function

Unfortunately, the consequences of their actions do not deter them from continuing to use their drug of choice even though they are aware of the trauma that their addiction is bringing to both their and their family’s lives.


A loss of control happens when a person is unable to show any restraint when it comes to their substance addiction. This means that a severe addiction has begun, and that detoxification and treatment are necessary to save the patient’s life.

In some cases, the person may realize that their substance abuse is spiraling out of control and may try to stop using it. If, however, they try to stop without the help of a professional this could be life-threatening.

It is important to remember that help is available. At The Retreat of Atlanta, we know that no person battling addiction is a lost cause and that there are many treatment options available to help our patients to overcome their addiction and manage their mental illness to achieve sobriety.

At The Retreat of Atlanta, you will concentrate on the current issues in a cognitive-behavioral therapy program. The counseling should not focus too much on past problems. It helps to change your thinking cycle regularly to strengthen your mental health.

A combination of CBT and medicine may be the only solution to your problems in some cases. The Retreat of Atlanta is here to help you tackle mental health problems as well as addiction through these services.

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