Port St. Lucie, FL (PRWEB) September 7, 2009
One of the most popular, and most effective, types of drug and alcohol treatment centers is the dual diagnosis center. What this type of center does is treat both addiction and alcoholism along with any co-occurring mental health disorders, such as depression or anxiety. The philosophy at the core of dual diagnosis centers is that addictions and mental health disorders are interconnected, and if one is treated while the other is ignored, than the untreated disorder is liable to run rampant and cause a relapse of the treated disorder. Most dual diagnosis centers run on a similar model, with the addictions being treated with one on one and group therapy, as well as educational groups and supplementary therapies. The mental health disorders are also treated with the talk therapies, but the main avenue that most centers use to treat them is the trial and error prescription of psychiatric medications. The Ambrosia Treatment Centers, with locations in Port Saint Lucie and Singer Island, FL has taken the guesswork out of the applications of these medications with the use of neurotransmitter testing.
Neurotransmitters are chemicals that are naturally produced in the brain that are responsible for our moods. There are dozens of different chemicals that help regulate our nervous system, although not all neurotransmitters are equally important, with a handful, among them Serotonin, Dopamine and Glutamate being very significant in the way that the brain functions. Most psychiatrists and treatment centers try to make a best guess at where the patient's neurotransmitter levels stand based on answers to questionnaires or interviews, and then prescribe medications that alter the levels of those neurotransmitters. The psychiatrists then need to wait several weeks to hear the patient's reports about their mood on the medication before deciding the medication's effectiveness, changing doses, or changing medications completely. All the while, the psychiatrist must keep in mind that the alteration up or down in the patients mood may have as much to do with external events as the medication. The Ambrosia Treatment Center's use of neurotransmitter testing, however, makes assessing a patients levels of these vital brain chemicals guesswork free.
The actual testing of a clients neurotransmitter levels is done using a non invasive urine test. The sample is tested to assess levels of the 12 neurotransmitters most important to mood. These include all of the chemicals that the most commonly prescribed psychiatric medications are used to modify. The results of the test are interpreted by a qualified psychiatrist, who is then able to prescribe medication as well as recommend cutting edge over the counter supplements to target exactly the transmitters that are deficient in the client, or, in appropriate cases, a broad spectrum solution that will help raise the levels of all appropriate transmitters.
This approach to psychiatric treatment of addicts and alcoholics represents a true breakthrough in treatment of dually diagnosed clients. Instead of months of trial and error use of powerful psychiatric medications, some of which may produce negative effects, a client is given access to targeted medications and supplements based on the absolute levels of the chemicals that the medications are designed to alter, not based on a best guess of a doctor. The Ambrosia Treatment Centers have undergone a pilot program of the new testing before a full launch, and the results have astounded. Not only are clients reporting the intended results of more effective treatment of their co-occurring disorders, but they are also reporting a better engagement in the therapeutic process. Clients have stated that they feel a greater participation in their care when they are able to sit down with a doctor and not just report how they feel, but actually sit with staff while they are explained exactly what the concrete testing results say about them, and how they are able to begin treatment. It is through this cutting edge, progressive treatment, and others like them that The Ambrosia Treatment Centers plan on continuing to lead the field in dual diagnosis treatment.