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Turnbridge operates leading mental health and substance abuse treatment programs throughout Connecticut. This blog is a resource for people seeking addiction and mental health recovery information and inspiration, and the latest Turnbridge news and events.

Why Women Need a Safe Space for Dual Diagnosis Recovery

womens dual diagnosis recovery center

Mental health disorders are extremely common among women, and often lead to substance addiction. Combined, substance abuse and mental illness become dual diagnosis, which requires very specialized treatment and a safe, secure place to heal. Learn why women need safe, sober recovery homes when battling dual diagnosis.

About one in every five adults in the United States lives with a mental health disorder. Your neighbor may be struggling with anxiety. Your child may be battling depression. A friend or family member may be experiencing symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. The list goes on. Mental health conditions are very common, and research shows they are predominantly affecting women.

According to the American Psychiatric Association, twice as many women experience depression in their lifetime than men. (Depression is, by far, the most common mental illness among women today.) However, women are also twice as likely to struggle with PTSD or an anxiety disorder than their male counterparts. The vast majority of people with eating disorders are women, most suicide attempts are initiated by women, and generally speaking, women are more likely to be abused. As a result, women are also at a high risk of self-medicating with drugs and developing a dual diagnosis. 

Dual diagnosis means that a person is suffering from co-occurring disorders, typically a mental health disorder and substance use disorder, at the same time. Often, women facing depression, anxiety, or other mental health symptoms may turn to drugs to numb the pain. This can lead to substance addiction and requires specialized, integrated, dual diagnosis treatment

Women face many unique challenges in their lifetime, and this holds true in the recovery process. Women are highly likely to be physically, sexually, or emotionally abused, with 55 to 99 percent of women in drug treatment reporting a history of trauma. So, while in recovery for dual diagnosis, women require a very specific treatment approach. The treatment program must be gender-specific, trauma-informed, and provide a safe and secure space to live while there.

Gender-specific, residential dual diagnosis treatment is critical for women struggling with co-occurring disorders. This means that a woman is surrounded by and lives alongside other women in recovery, without the pressures or fears that may be stirred by the opposite gender. Women reside at or nearby their treatment facility, in sober recovery homes specifically designed for women who are in the healing process. 

If you are seeking a dual diagnosis treatment program for your loved one, it is important to find one that meets her unique needs. While everyone has different needs in recovery, there are commonalities among women, and therefore certain qualities that make a women’s treatment center stand out. Below, we outline what to look for in a women’s dual diagnosis treatment facility, and why:

  • Gender-specificity

As you can gather, women have very different experiences than men in their lifetime, and in the recovery process. They are more likely to experience abuse and trauma, and more likely to battle common mental illnesses. They also have different responsibilities, pressures, and expectations in life. For this reason, it is important to find a gender-specific treatment center where your loved one will feel supported by other women, and where she will be free from distractions caused by the opposite gender. 

Gender-specific treatment programs like Turnbridge are equipped with clinicians who specialize in women’s dual diagnosis recovery. At every phase of treatment, women have access to counselors, medical professionals, and support staff who understand their journey. Additionally, women have access to peers who have walked in similar shoes. At Turnbridge, we encourage the making of friends and building a sober network, as those relationships are crucial for a lasting recovery.

  • A safe, secure environment.

As noted above, many women in drug treatment have histories of trauma. Many women also struggle with mental illness and anxieties. They may have fears about the world around them, fears that could potentially delineate the healing process. For this reason, it is essential to have a safe and secure place where they can live while in recovery. By choosing a dual diagnosis treatment program with on-campus recovery homes for women, you can ensure your loved one will not be fearful or distracted by mainstream life. She can focus fully on her mental, physical, and emotional well-being and feel comfortable engaging in her treatment, knowing that she is safe. 

At a residential dual diagnosis treatment center like Turnbridge, clinicians and support workers are always on staff, meaning women have 24/7 access to help when they need it most. Additionally, our residences for women are on a gated campus and fully monitored with camera systems, to ensure our clients’ safety. This gives many women – and their families – peace of mind. 

  • Tranquil and comfortable surroundings.

It is important for your loved one to feel comfortable in her recovery setting, as this can fuel (or hinder) her desire to engage and progress in treatment. For this reason, try to find a women’s recovery center that promotes positivity, comfortability, and peacefulness. This is the place where your loved one will come to heal emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. This is the place where she will come to find and love herself again. Her surroundings must reflect the quality and the beauty that we want her to see in herself. A setting that reflects this level of positivity will set her up for success. 

At Turnbridge, we aim to ensure our clients are comfortable in their residences, giving them access to all they need throughout the recovery journey. Women have access to delicious, nutritiously-prepared meals, in-house gyms for fitness and yoga, as well as studios where they can create art. The sober living homes at Turnbridge are full of beautiful furnishings and finishes, serving as a reminder of the respect we uphold for our clients (and the respect they should have for themselves). 

When a women’s dual diagnosis treatment center meets the basic necessities of safety, housing, and nutrition, then goes beyond to ensure women have a comfortable, supportive environment to heal, that is when you know it is a reputable, credible place for women. That is when dual diagnosis recovery can truly begin for your loved one.

To learn more about the sober living and recovery homes for women at Turnbridge, or to get your loved one the path towards recovery, please do not hesitate to call. The women’s program at Turnbridge is especially designed for women struggling with addiction and mental health disorders. Our staff is specialized in trauma-informed and dual diagnosis therapies, and is ready to help you. 

Call 877-581-1793 to learn more.