Common Co-Occurring Disorders

Co-occurring disorders are those that exist simultaneously within some alcohol and drug addicts. The term used to describe the co-existence of addiction alongside other health disorders is dual diagnosis.

For the most part, mental health conditions are the most common form of concurrent disorders. However, eating disorders and drug abuse are also discussed frequently in relation to co-occurring disorders.

The following are the most common disorders that co-exist within men, women, and young people suffering from alcohol and/or drug addiction.


Depression can affect people of all ages, from teenagers through to adults. Common symptoms of depression often include persistent sadness, anxiety, and emptiness. Consequently, depression can lead people to feeling worthless, fatigued, and lacking in energy.

Alcohol and depression unfortunately go hand in hand for many sufferers. They turn to alcohol to slow themselves down and mask their emotions when in the presence of others. Marijuana is another substance used by sufferers.

But no matter which is used, both will only make depression worse. The sensation will only become magnified due to the chemical dependence. The only solution is to speak to somebody and seek help in confronting your issues.

Social Anxiety Disorders

People with social anxiety often come across as shy when they meet other people, and this is because they feel incredibly uncomfortable when meeting new people. A social anxiety disorder goes far beyond the general nerves that normal people feel when placed in an uncertain situations.

On a mental level, somebody who suffers from this disorder will constantly think that other people are evaluating them and making negative conclusions. That is why sufferers avoid social situations that they know will be filled with unknowns.

Men and women alike can suffer from social anxiety disorders. Both are also at risk of turning to alcohol or drugs to reduce their anxiety, which can eventually lead to constant use just to get by.

Conduct Disorders

Young people who behave badly and struggle to maintain their everyday conduct can eventually come to consume alcohol and/or drugs due to their carefree attitude to risks. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a prime example, with symptoms including a lack of focus, laziness, and susceptibility to addictive behavior.

People with conduct disorders can turn to drugs to create a sense of focus that normally eludes them, while alcohol allows for them to relax from ADHD symptoms.

Recreationally, they might also use party drugs for a greater rush in social situations.

Post-traumatic Stress

Although often described as a mental illness associated with those who serve in the armed forces, post-traumatic stress has a wider link in the context of drug addiction and mental health.

Young people who endure a harrowing incident early in life can develop post-traumatic stress that leaves them feeling numb because of their complex emotions. Childhood abuse is incredibly difficult for them to overcome.

To deal with their emotions and anger, people who suffer from post-traumatic stress might turn to alcohol and/or drugs as a form of escape or coping mechanism. Inpatient treatment will be required after persistent abuse.

Eating Disorders

Teenage years are when eating disorders first arise, with suffers first developing a problem and then trying to find ways to continue with their behavior. The primary concern with eating disorders is that young people can turn to tobacco and diet pills to suppress their appetites.

Having explored tobacco and diet pills, young people with eating disorders can later progress to using illegal drugs that suppress their appetites even further. Concerning drugs include the likes of cocaine and speed.