A co-occurring disorder is when you have two or more conditions that need to be treated substance abuse disorder and a mental health condition. Knowing what issues surround co-occurring disorders will help express the dire need as to why you need to go into treatment as well as help someone else you know get treatment.


The stigma of co-occurring disorders makes it hard for treatment to be a possibility. Many think people with mental illnesses are dangerous and that those with a substance abuse disorder are immoral. The truth is that majority of those with a mental health disorder are no threat to society and just need help. People also need to understand that addiction is a brain disease that impairs your health, social life, and having control over it. People with a co-occurring disorder are ashamed or scared of anyone finding out where they will isolate themselves or deny treatment. By giving into the stigma of having a co-occurring disorder as well as others, you will be denied help, finding work, and having a stable home.

Criminal Justice System

Many people in the U.S. are convicted of drug offenses and the United States Department of Justice is the biggest source of addiction treatment referrals. According to the Bureau of Justice statistics of 2011-2012, more than a third of prisoners and half of inmates have a history of mental illness. Programs like drug courts are trying their hardest to provide alternatives to criminals with drug problems aside from just arresting them.


The homeless have little or no access to help for their co-occurring disorder. They may not know they have a mental illness and their history of legal issues can make it impossible for them to get a job. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, in 2016, more than 200,000 homeless have a substance abuse disorder and a mental illness.


Veterans abuse substances to cope with their mental illness and sometimes, mental illness can form addiction. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration says that 50% need mental health treatment and get it but more than half do not receive it. 70% of homeless veterans have substance abuse disorder. They do not want to be treated differently and Veteran Affairs can have long wait times. Taking medication and going into therapy will ensure happiness and fulfillment once you are sober.

Located in downtown Midland, The Springboard Center’s mission is to offer programs and services to treat alcohol and drug addiction treatment using an evidence based curriculum, 12 step programs, diet, nutrition, exercise, emotional, mental and spiritual development for a long recovery. For more information, please call us at 432-620-0255 as we are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.