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Are some mental illnesses more likely to co-occur with substance use?

March 8, 2018

It is possible for any mental health disorder to occur at the same time as substance use disorders. However, there is evidence of substance use problems being more common with certain mental health conditions. 

Below is the percentage of people with certain mental health disorders who also have a substance abuse problem:

– PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder): 85 – 90%
– Antisocial behaviour disorder: 82%
– Bipolar disorder: 71%
– Schizophrenia: 50%

Adolescents with certain mental health disorders are also more likely to have problems with substance use than those without the disorders. Those with attention deficit disorder, conduct disorder, or oppositional defiant disorder are seven times more likely to use substances. Those with depression are four times more likely to use substances, and those with anxiety are twice as likely to have problems with substance abuse.

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