Panic disorder, with its characteristic feature of panic attacks, can be a very difficult condition to overcome. This is made more difficult in the co-occurrence of a substance use disorder. These conditions are closely related, and negative symptoms of one condition can worsen and intensify the other, often leading to a synergy of distress and discomfort. Finding competent, dual diagnosis treatment and care can often be required if someone hopes to overcome these challenging conditions.
What is Panic Disorder Treatment?
Panic disorder is a type of anxiety disorder that manifests as sudden, intense bursts of fear, worry, and of course, panic. Treatment for this condition can take several different avenues that may be effective, although it has been shown that an integrated and comprehensive approach that utilizes multiple techniques is the most effective treatment course. 1
Panic disorder commonly co-occurs alongside a variety of other mental health issues, including substance abuse. There is a high, 2-way correlation between substance abuse and anxiety disorders, particularly panic disorder. In someone who has suffered from a substance abuse disorder in the past, there is a 2.5 times higher chance that they will also experience panic disorder during their life. This is even more pronounced specifically with an alcohol use disorder, as those diagnosed with an alcohol use disorder have a more than 4 times higher chance of developing a panic disorder than the general population. On the other side, in over 50% of people with co-occurring substance abuse and panic disorder, panic disorder emerged prior to the substance use disorder. While the exact interplay between these conditions is unclear, there certainly seems to be some strong connections. 2, 4
Importance of Treatment
In cases of co-occurring panic disorder and substance use disorder, it can be crucial to receive treatment for both conditions simultaneously if someone wants to have the best possible chances for long-term recovery. An integrated and comprehensive dual diagnosis treatment program has been shown to produce more positive treatment outcomes than treatment for either condition on its own. For example, one study saw that patients with panic disorder and substance use disorder who underwent treatment for only their panic disorder had higher treatment dropout rates and higher levels of anxiety than in patients who underwent dual diagnosis, integrated treatment for both conditions simultaneously. 3, 4
At The Summit Wellness Group, we understand the importance of a well-rounded, full-spectrum approach to treatment and recovery. Our treatment programs utilize the most effective techniques from several mental health disciplines including psychiatric care, medications, behavioral therapy, and holistic treatment techniques. By providing the widest range of tools possible, we give our clients the best possible chance of achieving long term recovery.
Types of Treatment
Our integrative treatment framework is aimed at treating every aspect of a person and encourages recovery, healing, and growth in physical, psychological, and emotional aspects. Just a few of the specific treatment approaches that we provide include:
- Psychiatric Care
- Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy
- Group Therapy
- Art Therapy
- Mindfulness and Meditation Practices
- Yoga and Chiropractic Care
Aside from the specific treatments, we also provide different levels of care depending on someone’s unique needs. We have different treatment programs that can accommodate any schedule, level of care, and can be adjusted depending on someone’s ability to pay for treatment. Our different treatment programs include:
- Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP): Our IOP program offers a high level of care, while also retaining a flexible structure that allows a high level of treatment customization. This program can suit anyone’s schedule, as it is 9 hours per week with sessions available during the day and evenings.
- Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP): Our PHP program provides the highest level of care, while still allowing our clients to return home each night to sleep in their own home. This program is 30 hours per week and provides comprehensive and extremely well-rounded care.
- Sober Living: This is our off-site housing facility that provides a safe and healthy environment for comfortable living while someone undergoes treatment.
The more tools available to aid in the treatment process, the better the outcomes become. We provide a full-spectrum array of treatment techniques to address dual diagnosis issues and co-occurring disorders in the most compassionate and supportive manner possible. Using this kind of multifaceted treatment approach provides the most positive and beneficial treatment outcomes. If you or a loved one is struggling with co-occurring panic disorder and substance use disorder, pick up the phone and call us today.
- Social Work in Public Health: Substance Use Disorders and Anxiety – A Treatment Challenge for Social Workers
- Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences: Anxiety Disorders and Drug Dependence – Evidence on Sequence and Specificity Among Adults
- Harvard Review of Psychiatry: Treatment of Co-occurring Anxiety Disorders and Substance Use Disorders
- SAMHSA: Substance Use Disorder Treatment for People With Co-Occurring Disorders