Helpful Tips in Coping with Bipolar Disorder

Finding out you have a bipolar disorder is bound to be a shock. In fact, it is not uncommon to experience a period of denial. But it is when you get beyond that denial stage that positive steps can be taken to understand your illness and begin to effectively cope with it.

Many people with bipolar disorder lead very satisfying and successful lives, both personally and professionally. There are diverse ways in which to address your disease, including self-management, medication and/or psychotherapy. After arming yourself with knowledge of your disease and consulting with a doctor who specializes in it, you will be better equipped to make informed decisions about treatment.

There are, however, many misconceptions out there that can hinder your progress. Some will suggest you’ll never be normal or that it’s all in your head or you can control it by means of will power. None of this is true any more than such statements are true of an alcoholic.

It is important to establish a support system consisting of medical professionals as well as friends and family that you trust. The better your family members understand this disorder, the more helpful they can be in a positive way. A medical treatment team may consist of a therapist and a psychiatrist, and possibly a primary care doctor. Each approaches your disease from a different standpoint, and share information so as to arrive at the best treatment options for you.

You can do your part by being well-informed and trusting your doctors. Giving proper attention to diet and healthful living can also help minimize your symptoms. If it is determined that medication is in order, be consistent in taking it on a regular basis and resist the temptation to quit that medication without your doctor’s approval.

According to Cape Girardeau bipolar disorder specialists, depression is often a byproduct of bipolar disorder. This is more easily prevented or managed by knowing and watching for the warning signs. Getting the proper amount of sleep is vital in preventing depressive episodes and controlling mood, as is proper diet and avoiding too much sugar.

This is also an important time to listen to what your medical support team has to say, as their monitoring makes them a reliable gauge of any approaching depression. Those closest to you are also often reliable gauges. If more than one person has called attention to a change of mood, you would be wise to listen.

Medication is often necessary as a tool in coping with such episodes. Establishing healthful routines helps. That includes your sleep schedule, eating three or more healthful meals a day and getting proper exercise. Remember that exercise is a natural and very effective way to elevate your mood and combat manic tendencies.

A common issue among those with bipolar disorder is that the highs (the euphoric manic state) may feel so good, particularly after a depressive episode, that the patient does not want it to go away. They may even decide to discontinue treatment, thinking they no longer have the problem. This is another reason to be well-informed and to listen to others, especially professionals regarding the state of your mental health.

Keeping all these pointers in mind can help those with bipolar disorder maintain a stable and healthy lifestyle and more effectively cope with their highs and lows.