Someone who suffers from both a mental health illness and an addiction (whether substance or activity) is considered to have a concurrent disorder. For example, someone suffering from both schizophrenia and an opioid addiction, someone with clinical depression and alcoholism, or someone with obsessive-compulsive disorder and an addiction to gambling would all be considered to have a concurrent disorder.
Concurrent disorders cause unique problems in diagnosing and treating. The symptoms of one problem can mask, mimic or exacerbate the symptoms of the other. For example, the depression and manic states of bipolar disorder may appear similar to the effects of alcohol abuse and vice versa.
The symptoms and signs for a concurrent disorder are different from person to person, depending on the particular addiction and mental health issue.
Effective treatment for this population calls for a unified approach addressing the mental illness, the substance use/activity and their interconnectedness. The mandate of the Concurrent Disorders Program is to provide assessment, treatment, referral and aftercare to people with both a serious mental illness and an addiction.
Service is provided by means of individual counseling, groups and family consultation.
The intention of the program is to provide clients with education on how their mental illness and substance use/addiction impact each other. We aim to provide skills training on changing your substance use/addiction and managing symptoms of mental illness.
 Centre for Addiction and Mental Health: Concurrent Disorders. http://www.camh.ca/en/hospital/health_information/a_z_mental_health_and_addiction_information/concurrent_disorders/Pages/Concurrent-Disorders.aspx
 Mental Health Commission of Canada: The Facts. http://strategy.mentalhealthcommission.ca/the-facts/
 Canadian Mental Health Association Ontario: Concurrent Disorders. http://ontario.cmha.ca/mental-health/mental-health-conditions/concurrent-disorders/