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Mild Neurocognitive Disorders and Substance Abuse

Mild Neurocognitive Disorders and Substance AbuseWhen aging becomes more of a decline than an incline, coping with the many things that can happen to the mind and body can be incredibly challenging. In most cases, those who are in their golden years (or who are about to enter into them) often experience a number of obstacles that test their ability to manage everyday struggles that come with age. In addition, a mild neurocognitive disorder causes some to struggle with their day-to-day routines.

Challenges of Mild Neurocognitive Disorders

Mild neurocognitive disorders were not considered diagnosable in the professional arena until the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders was released in 2013. Mild neurocognitive disorders often need to be treated because they produce side effects such as the following:

  • Difficulty functioning – The most prominent telltale sign of a mild neurocognitive disorder is that an individual is unable to perform daily activities, such as showering, washing dishes, and cooking a meal, without having trouble doing so. This can lead to extreme frustration for an individual. As the disorder gets worse, the individual might begin abusing drugs or alcohol as a means of releasing frustration.
  • Forgetfulness – Many mild neurocognitive disorders develop into more complex disorders, such as Alzheimer’s or dementia. One of the main symptoms of a mild neurocognitive disorder is forgetfulness, such as forgetting to turn off the stove, not locking the house door, or not taking medications. Forgetfulness can make an individual feel useless and guilty about not being able to be as responsible as he or she would like. This can be highly upsetting to a point where individuals turn to drugs or alcohol to wash away their behavioral concerns.

Some challenges of mild neurocognitive disorders include having difficulty functioning and growing forgetful, both of which can lead to a loss of independence that can be emotionally harmful to an individual.

The Importance of a Proper Diagnosis

Now that the DSM-5 has allowed diagnosticians to properly diagnose mild neurocognitive disorders, doctors and therapists can work to address the side effects. This is incredibly important because it can help prevent the development of future substance abuse problems that stem from the many side effects that mild neurocognitive disorders can produce in an individual.

Do You Need Treatment?

Call our toll-free, 24 hour helpline right now. Do not waste one more day abusing drugs or alcohol because of a disorder that can be treated. Call us today to get the help you deserve.

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