How to cope with bipolar disorder

Bipolar Disorder

As the former quote says, mood swings are the core feature of people with bipolar disorder.

As a matter of fact, events can trigger the mood swings, making the person feel the related excitement or sadness in such a deep way.

Bipolar disorder is an affective disorder that implies strong mood swings, from mania or hypomania to deep depression, alternating with periods of time with mood in a normale range.

There are two types of bipolar disorders:

  • Type I: periods of intense activation and excessive mood elevation alternates with periods of deep depression. During mood elevation, the person doesn’t need to sleep as much as usual, acts in a different way from how he normally does, has an extreme self-confidence that could bring him to get involved into potentially dangerous situations (excessive speed driving, gambling, not safe and/or promiscuous sexual activity, …). This elevation is so intense that it gets very difficult to handle and potentially dangerous for the person himself or the people who surround him, requiring then a hospitalisation. Sometimes mixed states can be present: the person can experience symptoms of mania and depression at the same time.
  • Type II: periods of time with hypomania alternate with periods of depression. Hypomania means having a less intense mood elevation, that never requires a hospitalisation. Even if the mood swings are less intense, their impact and consequences are anyway impressive.

Bipolar disorder treatment?

Bipolar disorder can be managed with an appropriate pharmacotherapy with mood stabilisers prescribed by a specialised psychiatrist, that will help you in controlling these swing and that should be very regularly taken.

Cognitive Behavioural psychotherapy is a parallel tool that is highly recommended by NICE guidelines (National Institute of Health and Care Excellence) in the treatment of bipolar disorder.

As a matter of fact, psychotherapy can be very helpful to better cope with the consequences of the swings and to adjust your lifestyle to prevent mood changes and to better cope with them. The best ways to prevent mood changes are indeed pharmacotherapy and adopting a very stable and healthy lifestyle.

As Sun Tzu said, “keep your friends close, but your enemies closer”. Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy can help you in getting to know bipolar disorder, in having a better awareness of it and in early recognising when the mood is changing so that you will be better prepared to deal with it before it gets worse.

Bipolar disorder can be a heavy burden; but with a good specialised help, you can arrange the best solution for you to cope with it.

Related articles:

“Life on a swing: sharing life with the bipolar disorder” by Ilaria Tedeschi.

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