Bipolar disorder is a type of mood disorder that affects all areas of life, including your mood, energy level, attention, and behaviors. While there is no cure for the disorder, the symptoms are very treatable. The sooner you seek treatment after developing the disorder, the greater your chances are for learning to manage it effectively. However, it’s never too late to explore treatment options for the condition. Bipolar disorder is a chronic condition, meaning it lasts for a lifetime. Therefore, even if depression lifts or mania subsides, they will return if the disorder isn’t treated.
Most people find that treating the symptoms of bipolar disorder requires a combination of medication, psychotherapy, and psychoeducation. Sometimes substance use treatment, intensive outpatient programs, and hospitalization are necessary as well. Each of these treatment components will be described in further detail below.
Medication is an important part of treating bipolar disorder and stabilizing moods. Here are some common categories of bipolar disorder medication you may be prescribed:
It’s important to remember that it may take several tries before you find the medication that works best for you. Report all side effects to your doctor as soon as you can, and consult with them before you discontinue medication. You should not experiment on your own with dosages or discontinue medication as soon as symptoms subside, because this will increase the risk of mania or depression returning. Also, because some antidepressants have suicidal thoughts as a side effect, talk to your doctor or a medical professional immediately if you experience any.
The first step in treating bipolar disorder is receiving a proper diagnosis. Medication and other treatments may vary depending on whether you have Bipolar I Disorder, Bipolar II Disorder, or Cyclothymic Disorder, and whether you have a history of substance abuse.4 Your doctor can make recommendations for psychiatrists, counselors, and other mental health professionals who can provide effective treatment for your mental health.
It’s also important to remember that mood symptoms won’t simply vanish forever, so don’t put off getting help just because you feel better. When you’re experiencing a stable mood, that can often be the most effective time for building support and finding effective medication to manage future episodes of mania or depression. If your mood feels unstable, and you’re experiencing delusions, hallucinations, or thoughts of suicide, then seek help immediately. You can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, simply walk into an emergency room, or call a loved one for help.
Bipolar disorder is treatable, and moods can be managed. So don’t hesitate to take steps today to recruit the best support and find the best treatment for your bipolar disorder.
Reposted from Psycom.net
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