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What is Dual Diagnosis?

It is not uncommon that individuals who are dealing with a substance use disorder are also afflicted by a mental health condition, with one tending to cause the other. For example, someone with depression may turn to drug or alcohol abuse to self-medicate and cope with their condition, or someone may have heavily abused a substance and triggered a psychotic episode.

In these cases, a dual diagnosis is given. This term describes people who simultaneously have severe mental health and substance use issues and is also referred to as a co-occurring disorder.

Mental Health Disorders

A number of inherited and environmental factors can influence if someone develops a mental health disorder. At least one mental health disorder must be present to receive a dual diagnosis, these may include:

  • Major Depressive Disorder
  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Eating disorders
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Schizophrenia

Substance Use Disorders

Substance Use Disorders

A substance use disorder - otherwise known as alcohol and drug addiction - impacts millions of people nationwide. The complex neurological condition can be identified by compulsive use of illicit drugs or alcohol despite the negative impact on their health, relationships, and career.

There are a number of commonly used substances that have the potential for misuse and addiction. These include:

  • Nicotine
  • Alcohol
  • Cannabis
  • Prescription drugs
  • Opioids
  • Cocaine
  • Methamphetamine
  • Heroin
  • Hallucinogens

Luxury Rehab

Luxury rehab is a type of alcohol and drug abuse treatment center, usually located in a resort-like setting. These facilities allow people to go through the recovery process in a beautiful and secluded location, bringing full focus on overcoming sobriety. Overall, luxury rehab treatment centers provide an environment for the safest and most successful recovery possible.

What Are the Benefits of Luxury Rehab?

Luxury rehab has significantly more benefits than regular facilities, such as:

  • Dual diagnosis treatment and screening
  • Some of the best-trained medical staff available
  • Ability to schedule additional therapy appointments outside of allotted time slots
  • Numerous treatment options beyond cognitive behavioral therapy e.g. experimental, holistic, and behavioral therapies
  • The best medication-assisted treatment available
  • Highly personalized and modified treatments to approach multiple conditions at once
  • A high number of weekly specialized treatments
  • A low density of patients
  • An extremely comfortable and relaxing environment to the highest level
  • A fully equipped fitness center and other luxury amenities
  • Catered food or a private chef
  • Options to continue with work alongside the treatment programs

Around half of residential facilities screen for mental health conditions on admission. In a luxury program, this is always part of the introductory procedure. From this, a treatment program can be built around any possible mental conditions, plus appropriate trauma treatment that may be contributing to someone's drug and alcohol addiction.

Although such a large number of people are battling a dual diagnosis, one study showed that only around 18% of treatment centers offer therapy for the condition - with this small number of facilities usually being luxury rehabs.

When housed in a luxury rehab center, these screenings also allow for a highly personalized treatment plan to be put in place. Regular residential facilities commonly offer pre-defined substance abuse programs, though addiction treatment is not a one size fits all endeavor. This personalization gives people the best tools available to overcome their addiction.

The small number of people who are receiving treatment in luxury rehab centers have the benefit of a small group recovery. Across the US, 65% of residential rehab options house over 120 people per month, compared to around ten in luxury facilities.

This small group setting allows for more physical and mental space to recover, increased access to clinicians, and the option for additional sessions if required. Luxury rehab facilities also allow for more privacy, reducing security risks and diminishing the worry of seeing someone that an inpatient may know.

As the name implies, luxury rehab centers offer luxurious amenities. This allows people to focus on recovering from their substance abuse and mental health issues in a comfortable setting. These amenities can include pool access, acupuncture, a full gym, massage therapy, a movie theater, and more, making this difficult time a little easier and deterring people from leaving.

Accessibility of Luxury Rehab Centers

Accessibility of Luxury Rehab Centers

While many people think of luxury rehab facilities only being accessible for mental health and addiction treatment of the rich and famous, this is a misconception. Many luxury rehabs offer affordable care and accept numerous forms of payment, such as insurance or scholarships.

Depending on the treatment provider, much of the cost of a dual diagnosis treatment may be included in their insurance. Most rehab options accept private insurance coverage and offer a sliding fee scale based on the client's yearly salary. The best way to investigate what payment options are available for each treatment center is to contact them directly and explain your specific situation.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment in Luxury Rehab Centers

Inpatient dual diagnosis treatment in a luxury rehab provides a space away from the site where someone's addiction behavior formed or their trauma occurred. This luxury, fresh, serene environment allows for the development of a healthier routine and way of life. The staff working in the facility assist each person in setting up and sticking to their new schedule, which may include factors such as:

  • Regular wake-up times
  • Regular meal times
  • A healthy eating program
  • An exercise routine
  • A mindfulness schedule

Building up this new routine and way of life will make it easier for inpatients to break free of old habits when they return home, hopefully reducing the rate of relapse.

The Challenges of Dual Diagnosis Treatment at Luxury Rehab Centers

The Challenges of Dual Diagnosis Treatment at Luxury Rehab Centers

Dealing with a mental health disorder increases the susceptibility to developing a drug or alcohol addiction, plus simultaneously increases the mood-altering effects of illicit substances - making them more dangerous. Similarly, having an addiction increases the chances of developing a mental health problem due to the impact of substance abuse on the brain's chemistry and structure.

For these reasons, dual treatment for co-occurring disorders is vital to break this vicious cycle between the two conditions. Despite luxury rehab treatment centers providing individuals with the best chance of recovery possible, the influencing nature of each element of a dual diagnosis treatment means it is often complicated to approach and treat.

There are a number of further obstacles that make overcoming co-occurring disorders difficult. One of these reasons may be denial, many who have an addiction hide their conditions from those around them and are not honest with medical professionals attempting to treat them.

This also can be applied when approaching mental health disorders, with many struggling to accept their diagnosis. In either case, this denial makes it difficult for people to accept their dual diagnosis and therefore reject both mental health and addiction treatment when offered.

People dealing with co-occurring disorders find it difficult to focus and process information. These traits create further challenges when people are trying to comprehend their disorders or treatment. Another difficulty when approaching dual diagnosis treatment is the risk of illicit substances interfering and diminishing the effectiveness of prescription medication that is being used to treat one part of the condition.

Drug Detoxification

Drug Detoxification

The first step in treating a drug or alcohol addiction is to undergo a luxury drug detox program, where an individual will transition into sobriety. If the person is undergoing detoxification and is physically dependent on the substance they can experience withdrawal syndrome. This can present at ranging intensity depending on a number of variables in an individual, including:

  • The substance the person is detoxifying from
  • The length of time they have been abusing the substance
  • The amount of substance they have taken
  • Their past experience of detoxification
  • Other mental health disorders they have
  • Any physical health issues they have

Depending on these variables, people can experience withdrawal symptoms ranging from an uncomfortable headache to a deadly seizure. This is why it is advised to have a health care professional assist during the detox process. This allows for around-the-clock health care to ensure the process is as safe and comfortable as possible.

Inpatient luxury rehab also provides access to appropriate medications to help ease withdrawal symptoms. For people overcoming an alcohol addiction, withdrawals can sometimes be life-threatening, due to the shock on the central nervous system when coming off of the substance. Here, medications such as Disulfiram and Acamprosate are commonly prescribed to ease people's withdrawal process and decrease the chance of severe symptoms.



Individual therapy assists individuals overcome some of the blockades that make co-occurring disorders hard to treat. This treatment helps people to admit and accept their situation and stop engaging in self-sabotaging behavior that only sets back their recovery journey. Therapists are made available at any time for those lodging in the luxury facility which is especially helpful for those with insomnia - a common symptom of those recovering from a substance use disorder in addiction treatment, which increases the chance of relapse.

Commonly therapists will investigate trauma to find the route of the condition and current triggers that set certain behaviors and thoughts into motion. They will also teach new coping strategies to navigate through challenging times and negative moods, decrease the rate of relapse, and better be able to cope with the person's mental health condition. Education about the science of mental illness and addiction is also provided, as it allows people to better conceptualize what is happening to them.

Cognitive behavioral therapy is the go-to approach for treating a substance use disorder, though mental disorders are not a one size fits all approach. Other, evidence-based therapies may also be offered at most luxury rehabs that may be more suitable for the specific patient needing mental health or addiction treatment.

Alternative Treatment Options

Besides one-on-one counseling, further treatment modalities may also be offered in a person's recovery program, including family therapy and group therapy.

Alternative Treatment Options

Besides therapy, a wide range of alternative treatment options are commonly offered at luxury rehabs to treat co-occurring disorders. These make the whole approach more holistic and help to approach the recovery of the inpatient on all fronts. This helps when advancing through stages of recovery and increases the chance of long-term success when overcoming their addiction. These can include:

  • Nutritional therapy: this allows for people who have been abusing substances to repair their physical health. People commonly receive nutrition education also.
  • Spa therapy: aids muscle relaxation and makes recovery more comfortable, in turn lowering stress and anxiety. As these are major triggers for relapse, spa therapy can be vital to prevent a relapse in the early weeks of recovery.
  • Animal therapy: equine therapy has been clinically studied to reduce psychological distress and enhance psychological well-being. Other, more exotic animals such as capybaras and kinkajous are used by some facilities to bring comfort and emotional support to those in recovery.
  • Meditation or Yoga


Depending on the mental health issue at hand, a range of medications can be prescribed to deal with a dual diagnosis. Mood-regulating medications could be offered for people dealing with a mood disorder, such as Beta Blockers for anxiety or Antidepressant for depression. Antipsychotic medication - such as Aripiprazole or Haloperidol - can be offered for those going through hallucinations and delusions, common symptoms of Schizophrenia or a psychotic episode.

Extended Care Program

Extended Care Program

After the intensive preliminary treatment, an extended care program will be put into place to decrease the rate of relapse long-term. This transitionary period to a life of sobriety and better mental health management will require long-term visits to a therapist. Here, an individual's conditions can be monitored and their mental health or addiction treatment program can be changed accordingly.

Support groups are also a part of the recovery process. These provide a safe and non-judgmental space to talk about life experiences with people who have gone through a similar situation so they can understand and relate to your struggles. Support groups can be extremely therapeutic and hearing other people's stories and how they overcame hardships can serve as inspiration to tackle one's own issues.

Luxury addiction treatment centers usually facilitate finding appropriate after-care and resources to help people stay on track to long-term recovery from co-occurring disorders.

Contact Us

Each individual has their own set of circumstances and life experiences that have led them to the place they are at now. At Cirque Lodge, we understand this and accommodate our mental health and addiction treatment programs on a person-to-person basis to expertly fulfill each person's needs to the highest standard.

Please contact us today to find out about our dual diagnosis treatment programs in a luxury rehab to work through these issues in comfortable first-class accommodation.

About Cirque Lodge
Cirque Lodge is a recovery retreat providing cognitive and experiential therapies, in the pristine natural beauty of Utah’s Rocky Mountains.

Cirque Lodge is considered among our colleagues, as one of, if not the premium drug and alcohol rehab facility in the country.
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