VIDEO: Best Practices in the Treatment of Co-Occurring Disorders

Mary Woods, CEO WestBridge

"Co-Occurring Disorders is a very broad term that can mean multiple things... For us at WestBridge co-occurring disorders means that somebody has two distinct brain diseases that are occurring at the same time; they're both primary illnesses.  So we see both depression and cocaine dependence as primary disorders (for example), just like if you had both heart disease and hypertension.  For us, it's about treating both in an integrated fashion at the same time, and understanding how one affects the other.  But it's all about the relationship; if I connect really well with you, you're going to have a good outcome..."

Key Considerations for successful treatment of co-occurring disorders

Focus on wellness and lifestyle
  • Monitor and improve key areas of:  sleep, nutrition and exercise

Brain diseases and number of treatment episodes
  • Brain diseases can take shape in a variety of ways and manifest differently throughout treatment
    • Major mental illness in men tends to appear in late adolescence
    • Major mental illness in women typically manifests in early 20s

Mary Woods - Best Practices in the Treatment of Co-Occurring Disorders