When you first visit the doctor about your mood swings, you may not be sure what is wrong. You may have felt sad for days at a time and found it difficult to manage simple day-to-day activities. Occasionally, your mood may shift and you could find yourself overly energized, in a wonderful mood — and sure that nothing could ever go wrong. These factors may lead you to seek medical help from your physician who will likely refer you to a psychiatrist to confirm a diagnosis. If you are diagnosed with bipolar disorder you’ll work with a treatment team, including a therapist and a psychiatrist, to manage your treatment.
The Importance of Self-Care
A therapist can help you learn effective coping skills for managing life with bipolar disorder. He’ll teach you how to appropriately care for yourself, so you can limit the negative symptoms you experience.
Medication can be highly effective for treating bipolar disorder. When combined with the right kind of lifestyle changes, it can be even more effective. A therapist will teach you how to manage your day-to-day life, while a psychiatrist will prescribe medication to help you manage the neurobiological symptoms of the disease. Here are a few common methods used by sufferers and medical professionals to treat bipolar disorder.
Tracking and monitoring moods is an extremely important part of managing bipolar disorder. One way you can help your team of medical professionals is by accurately tracking your mood, sleep, exercise and medications each day. This will provide your treatment team with the necessary information to continue prescribing you appropriate medication. It’s easier for a doctor to provide you with the correct medication recommendations if he is aware of the symptoms you’re experiencing — as well as their severity.
Regular exercise can be incredibly helpful for managing the symptoms of patients with bipolar disorder. While you may not feel well enough to get out and jog for hours each day, you may find that your mood improves dramatically with just a few minutes of regular exercise.
Exercise helps fight depression and relieve anxiety. It also helps limit weight gain that sometimes occurs as a medication side effect. While most people who suffer from depression don’t always feel like exercising, it’s important to take the time to move daily, even when you don’t want to. You may find that a small amount of exercise helps lift your spirits, making you better equipped to face the challenges of the day.
Sleep hygiene is an important part of feeling well for patients with bipolar disorder. When you stay up too late to work on a stimulating activity in the evening, you may find you are unable to sleep properly. You may find that you feel better when you follow the same routine each day, going to bed at the same time and waking up at the same time. Having a schedule will allow you to feel properly energized in addition to allowing you to take your medications on a regular schedule.
One key part of treating bipolar disorder effectively is making sure medications are taken as scheduled. Many of the patients we help take multiple medications per day to manage their condition. Most take a combination of an antidepressant, an anti-anxiety medication and a mood stabilizer, such as Seroquel. It’s important that bipolar patients take medication on a regular schedule. If you fail to do so, it can dramatically affect your moods.
Managing the Cost of Bipolar Care
Effectively managing bipolar disorder can cost quite a bit of money each month. Doctor’s fees, therapist’s fees, supplements and medication add up. If you’re on a fixed income, it can sometimes be frustrating to spend so much money on medical care. You can limit the cost of your prescriptions by using an online pharmacy such as CanadianPharmacyMeds.com. Working with an online pharmacylike ours allows you to purchase Seroquel— and other medications you may require — at affordable prices. While patients with bipolar disorder may need to spend a sizable amount of money on treatment, methods like these can make it easier for you to budget for medical care.
Managing a Mental Health Emergency
Bipolar patients, especially those who don’t take their medications as scheduled, may be prone to mood swings, depression and even suicidal thoughts. If you have this condition, it’s important to call 911 or to visit the emergency room immediately if you should feel like hurting yourself or someone else. Emergency or urgent care professionals can help you get the immediate treatment you need.
With medications like Seroquel and appropriate self-care, you can successfully manage your symptoms, and lead a full and happy life, after a diagnosis of bipolar disorder.