If your mood disorder affects your energy level, behavior, and attention, you might have bipolar disorder. The disorder has no cure, but most of its symptoms are treatable. It depends on how soon you seek treatment when you develop the disorder.
It is all about learning how to manage mood swings or bipolar disorder symptoms. As mentioned, this condition lasts for a lifetime, but it is treatable. Therefore, if you can gain a better understanding of your own triggers, you are better equipped to respond to your own emotions. You may also be given medication for bipolar disorder as well.
The symptoms associated with bipolar disorder may be aggravated if you have a drug addiction. Mental illness can cause several complications when it comes to treating substance abuse disorder. That is why understanding and treating bipolar disorder is of paramount importance to improve mental health.
Understanding Bipolar Disorder
As mentioned earlier, bipolar disorder is generally a life-long condition that have can be somewhat unpredictable. With numerous ups and downs, the disorder can be damaging and devastating for health if not adequately treated. That is why it is imperative to understand the symptoms of bipolar disorder before you learn about its treatment.
For many people, the disorder causes both mania and depression with recurring episodes of each. These episodes create hurdles and obstacles when it comes to leading a productive and stable life. Most of the time, bipolar disorder causes such highs and lows in a person, that it affects their mood, activity, and energy level dramatically.
During the manic phase, the patient feels hyperactive and over-confident and tends to act very irresponsibly. When it is the depressive phase, dealing with even a minor issue, seems difficult. The interesting thing is that the condition can temporarily cause inflated self-confidence in a person. Because of this high level of confidence, a person may take on many demanding projects and risk activities that might jeopardize their life and their personal relationships.
During the depression phase, on the contrary, a person shows deep despair, hopelessness, has a low energy level and suffers from lack of motivation. In such a condition, focusing on even a small task seems difficult. Early diagnosis, in this regard, plays an important role to prevent severe symptoms. Only an experienced and qualified mental health professional can make an accurate diagnosis.
Types of Bipolar Disorder
There are four main types of bipolar disorder that include:
- Bipolar I Disorder: an individual with a Type I Disorder will have manic episodes that last at least 7 days and experience symptoms that will require proper hospital care. Depressive episodes are also associated with this type and last at least 2 weeks at a time.
- Bipolar II Disorder: this is the lesser version of Type I and individuals experiencing this will not have full-blown manic periods.
- Cyclothymic Disorder: individuals with Cyclothymic Disorder will have periods of hypomanic symptoms for at least 2 years.
- Unspecified Related Disorder: this disorder has symptoms that are similar to the other types of bipolar disorder but do not follow a certain guideline.
Addiction and Bipolar Disorder
In order to cope with symptoms of bipolar disorder, individuals often turn to other substances to east the pain they are feeling inside. Some may turn to prescription drugs to give them a euphoric high to help them forget. Others may turn to alcohol and over consume to try to numb their emotions.
Bipolar disorder and alcoholism tend to work in tandem. In fact, studies have shown that people diagnosed with bipolar disorder have a 60% chance of developing alcoholism at any point throughout their life. Although someone with this mental illness may see alcohol as an escape, both disorders worsen the symptoms of the other severely, which only leads to more problems down the road.
Alcohol greatly increases the length of periods of mania and depression bipolar individual experience. It also heightens an individual’s emotions and causes them to become confused or have hallucinations. A lot of bipolar people who choose to drink instead of get medical help do so because the effects from their medications are far worse than that of alcohol.
Bipolar Disorder Treatment
To treat bipolar disorder successfully, it is important to have a multidimensional approach. It is typically a combination of different treatments, including psycho-education, psychotherapy, and medication. In some cases, substance disorder treatment like hospitalization or intensive outpatient programs.
The first phase of treatment begins with medication. The common categories of medication are:
- Mood Stabilizers: The medicines are prescribed to treat hypo-manic episodes and manic
- Antidepressants: These help treat depressive episodes
- Antipsychotics: These medicines are for treating mood episode symptoms
Sometimes your doctor prescribes you the combination of mood stabilizers and antidepressants to prevent extreme mania and depression.
When symptoms seem to persist, your doctor may also prescribe antipsychotics. Medications are a must for those suffering from bipolar disorder as there is no cure. Your doctor, according to your condition, will work on fine-tuning dosages that work best for you.
Holistic Bipolar Disorder Treatment
It is important to know that not all medications for bipolar disorder are effective for all individuals. Finding the right medication that suits your needs might take multiple tries. In some cases, though, it’s best to use an approach to treatment that doesn’t involve medication-use. Holistic treatment for bipolar disorder may be the most effective option for some people who are living with this disorder.
Holistic treatment is an approach that takes the whole individual into account. Rather than focusing only on the physical effects of bipolar disorder on the person in treatment, holistic treatment seeks to address the individual’s mental, emotional, and social needs as well.
Types of Therapy
Psychotherapy, also called talk therapy, can help those who are working to overcome the effects of bipolar disorder. This therapy approach involves counseling sessions that provide individuals with the opportunity to learn effective strategies to cope with or manage symptoms. Additionally, it helps patients practice other lifestyle strategies to maintain a positive, stable mood.
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can help individuals to recognize their negative and harmful thinking patterns. This therapy also assists patients in replacing those harmful thoughts and cognitive behaviors with positive, healthy patterns and behaviors.
Therapies are great to help individuals face challenges, negative thinking patterns, and behaviors. Talk therapies further include family therapies in which family members learn to communicate effectively and calmly to the affected individual to help them reduce stress. Psycho-education further teaches problem-solving, resilience, and self-care habits.
Therapy sessions are wonderful to explore what triggers bipolar episodes. Once you know those triggers, you can work on reducing the frequent episodes of bipolar disorder.
Along with various types of therapy, holistic treatment for bipolar disorder may also include exercise and nutritional guidance as physical activity and diet can play a big role in helping individuals to work through the symptoms of bipolar disorder. Other components of holistic treatment may include stress management skill development.
Dual Diagnosis Treatment for Addiction and Bipolar Disorder
Outpatient treatment can also be your treatment solution that provides group and individual therapy. You can opt for this treatment option to receive peer support, case management, and medical support to keep mental illness and addiction at bay. It also provides symptom management, education, and, abuse recovery along with daily living skills.
The presence of a substance use disorder and mental health disorder is called a co-occurring disorder. To treat both the disorders together is trickier and often takes multiple approaches. Medical professionals divide the treatment rather than mixing up the treatments. For example, in addition to bipolar disorder treatment, patients spend some of their time in receiving addiction therapies like:
The one-on-one sessions are excellent to address the root cause of your addiction. You get multiple chances to share your stumbling blocks and experiences with different group members; At times, you receive practical scenarios not only to learn but practice essential skills of life.
You can spend the rest of your time in seeking treatment for your bipolar disorder. An addiction may complicate the treatment process slightly, but doctors can work on short-term methods or use benzodiazepines to stabilize the mood. If addiction is severe doctors plan the treatment carefully to avoid anything that can add to addiction severity.
Bipolar Disorder Treatment in North Carolina
At Crest View Recovery Center in North Carolina, we have competent and compassionate staff and medical professionals who know how to handle both addiction and bipolar disorder treatment at the same time. We offer a vast range of exceptional mental health treatments to identify the symptoms and treat them with an addiction program.
Bipolar disorder and addiction may seem invincible if you do not have access to the right rehab or mental program. But, here at Crest View Recovery Center, we can help you to overcome the persisting symptoms of these challenges in your life. Call us at (866) 986-1371 to begin your successful recovery program