Addiction and mental illnesses can make it hard for you to make the right choices. Many mental illnesses feature problems with thinking and comprehension. By going into treatment for addiction as well as mental illness, you will learn how to make the right decisions effectively. 

The Complexity of Simple Decisions

We may never know what is universally the “right” or “wrong” decision. What is right for one person can be wrong for another. But, some choices come with healthier and more productive outcomes that can benefit us in the long run such as saying no to drugs. When it comes to making a decision, we first try to understand which choice will be rewarding or give us more value. The reward we know we will get can motivate us on which choice to make or if we choose at all. Understanding what action and strategies are required to obtain this reward is important.

How Mental Disorders Can Complicate Decision-Making

Research has shown that people with schizophrenia have trouble understanding the relationship between their actions and outcomes. They are also more willing to jump to conclusions about the outcomes. People with addiction may know that the decisions they make to acquire drugs are wrong if it leads to terrible outcomes but still cannot bring themselves to alter their behaviors. For example, a driver under the influence can get into a series of car accidents throughout their lives and still cannot bring themselves to stop drinking. This is because substance abuse impacts regions in the brain that are important to adaptation. Being dependent on a substance can accelerate a person’s progression to habitual behavior. This makes it harder to stop seeking drugs even if the person no longer finds them enjoyable.

How to Help People Make Better Decisions

Unfortunately, no medication can fix your impaired decision-making due to the complexity of the brain. There are still ways to improve our memory and cognition like cognitive remediation therapy that trains the brain to respond to certain situations better. For people with schizophrenia, it can help improve their visual memory and complex decision-making. When a mental illness impacts cognition, it can be hard to maintain relationships, work, and lead a fulfilling life. By having more research done about how our different brains make different decisions, more solutions can be discovered that benefit those with substance abuse disorder or mental illness.

At Alta Loma Transformational Living, you will meet knowledgeable, compassionate professionals that understand addiction in all its forms.  Alta Loma uses an integrative and holistic approach to treat addiction and mental health issues. No treatment is one-size-fits-all, where you will have a team of experts prepared to create your customized treatment plan.  We offer care for your mind, body, and spirit, so that you can heal from the inside out and look forward to a lifetime of sobriety and wellness. If you are ready to take the first step in your recovery, please call us at 866-457-3843.