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Cover of Managing Depressive Symptoms in Substance Abuse Clients During Early Recovery

Managing Depressive Symptoms in Substance Abuse Clients During Early Recovery

Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series, No. 48


Rockville (MD): Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (US); .
Report No.: (SMA)08-4353

This Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) is designed to assist you—the substance abuse counselor—in working with clients who are experiencing depressive symptoms. These symptoms occur along a continuum of intensity from mild to severe. When they reach a certain level of intensity and frequency, they become consistent with a diagnosis of a mood disorder, such as major depressive disorder, dysthymic disorder, substance-induced mood disorder, or bipolar disorder. It is clear from clinical research and practice that a significant percentage of your clients have depressive symptoms. Some, but not all, will have these depressive symptoms in the context of a mood disorder diagnosis. Even if you will not be diagnosing and treating depressive illnesses—which is in the scope of practice of those mental and behavioral health professionals licensed in your State to diagnose and treat mood disorders, and capable of doing so—you will be providing substance abuse counseling to clients with these diagnoses and to clients with depressive symptoms but whose mood states do not reach a level that would warrant a mood disorder diagnosis (that is, clients whose symptoms do not meet the diagnostic criteria).


This publication was produced by The CDM Group, Inc. (CDM), and JBS International, Inc. (JBS), under the Knowledge Application Program (KAP) contract number 270-04-7049 with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). Christina Currier served as the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) KAP Government Project Officer. Rose M Urban, MSW, JD, LCSW, LCAS, served as the KAP Project Co-Director. Elizabeth Marsh Cupino formerly served as CDM KAP Managing Co-Director. Sheldon Weinberg, PhD, served as KAP Senior Researcher/Applied Psychologist. Other KAP personnel included Susan Kimner, KAP Deputy Project Director /Editorial Director and TIP Editor; Janet Humphrey, MA, KAP Writer/Editor; Michelle Myers, former Quality Assurance Editor; Amy Conklin, former Quality Assurance Editor; Virgie Paul, Librarian; Jonathan Max Gilbert, MA, Writer; and Radell Heintze, former KAP Project Coordinator.

Suggested citation:

Center for Substance Abuse Treatment. Managing Depressive Symptoms in Substance Abuse Clients During Early Recovery. Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series 48. DHHS Publication No. (SMA) 08-4353. Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2008.

The views, opinions, and content expressed herein are the views of the consensus panel members and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions, or policies of CSAT, SAMHSA, or DHHS. No official support of or endorsement by CSAT, SAMHSA, or DHHS for these opinions or for particular instruments, software, or resources is intended or should be inferred.

Bookshelf ID: NBK64057PMID: 22514854


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