Bipolar Disorder

Carol Cox

Description:

Bipolar disorder is sporadic and unpredictable mood swings!

Signs and Symptoms:

Hallucinations

Acting on impulse

Fidgets

Trouble focusing on a task

Causes:

The exact cause of bipolar disorder is unknown, but several factors may be involved. Some of these factors include Biological differences, Neurotransmitters, and Inherited traits!

  • Biological differences. People with bipolar disorder appear to have physical changes in their brains. The significance of these changes is still uncertain but may eventually help pinpoint causes.
  • Neurotransmitters. An imbalance in naturally occurring brain chemicals called neurotransmitters seems to play a significant role in bipolar disorder and other mood disorders.
  • Inherited traits. Bipolar disorder is more common in people who have a first-degree relative, such as a sibling or parent, with the condition. Researchers are trying to find genes that may be involved in causing bipolar disorder.

Treatment:

  • Medication – Medication is the cornerstone on bipolar disorder treatment. Taking a mood stabilizing medication can help minimize the highs and lows of bipolar disorder and keep symptoms under control.
  • Psychotherapy – Therapy is essential for dealing with bipolar disorder and the problems it has caused in your life. Working with a therapist, you can learn how to cope with difficult or uncomfortable feelings, repair your relationships, manage stress, and regulate your mood.
  • Education – Managing symptoms and preventing complications begins with a thorough knowledge of your illness. The more you and your loved ones know about bipolar disorder, the better able you’ll be to avoid problems and deal with setbacks.
  • Lifestyle management – By carefully regulating your lifestyle, you can keep symptoms and mood episodes to a minimum. This involves maintaining a regular sleep schedule, avoiding alcohol and drugs, following a consistent exercise program, minimizing stress, and keeping your sunlight exposure stable year round.
  • Support –Living with bipolar disorder can be challenging, and having a solid support system in place can make all the difference in your outlook and motivation. Participating in a bipolar disorder support group gives you the opportunity to share your experiences and learn from others who know what you’re going through. The support of friends and family is also invaluable. Reaching out to people who love you won’t mean you’re a burden to others.