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Why are People with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) More Susceptible to Addictive Behaviors?

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a difficult mental health condition, which is characterized by mood swings, difficulty in relationships, and actions that can harm themselves and others. Some people turn to alcohol or drugs to cope with symptoms of the mental health condition, while others struggle with addiction to substances as a result of using them too much and then deal with a dual diagnosis. Find out why people with BPD may be more susceptible to addictive behaviors and how to provide support for a loved one who is struggling.

Psychiatric Disorder

When dealing with a psychiatric disorder, it is difficult to cope with symptoms and function every day. People with BPD may express emotions towards a person of love and affirmation, then become violently angry the next moment. During adolescence is where BPD may rear its head but diagnosis can be challenging and, finally, getting them the help they need, even more so. An accurate diagnosis and treatment revolve around symptoms for BPD that can be related to substance abuse issues. Many people with BPD struggle with emotional and interpersonal challenges. This is a strong indicator of relapse of substance use to cope. These things are also made worse by substance use.

Seeking Help

Dealing with BPD and co-occurring substance use requires supporting the individual’s journey of healing on both fronts. There is a challenge to treat the addiction while also recognizing the issues associated with a serious psychiatric disorder. Some things that have worked include:

  • Dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT)
  • Cognitive-behavioral treatment (CBT)
  • Group therapy and individual therapy for addiction
  • Strong support network for individuals who struggle with both 
  • Medications monitored closely by professional doctors trained in addictions therapy

While many people struggle with substance abuse and mental health issues, there is a need to treat both together so that the combination of medication and therapy provides a foundation to rebuild their life upon. People can struggle for years without proper treatment because of insufficient care. Going to a place of healing will quite often have positive results for the person who struggles, their family, and loved ones. 

The Guest House is based on a Therapeutic Communty model. We help people learn how to live free of addiction. One of our goals is to help people with dual diagnosis live a rewarding, fulfilling life in recovery. Our trained staff is top-notch when it comes to offering support for the healing journey from addiction to hope in recovery. Call us to find out more: 855-483-7800.