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Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder, which can also be called manic-depressive illness, is a mental health condition that can bring about intense and upsetting mood changes, called mood episodes or swings, and dramatic shifts in energy as well as general activity levels. This is something that sufferers have to contend with daily, and the fact that it affects so many people in the world and in Massachusetts itself makes treating bipolar disorder a priority. The good news is that there are various treatment options for people to consider, so let’s explore some that are available here at Atlantic Behavioral Health and talk about why our intensive outpatient care options are excellent if you have bipolar depression.

What Is Bipolar Disorder?

Bipolar disorder is complex, and there are so many nuances and paths to go down that it’s impossible to give you a complete idea of exactly what this condition is. However, what we can do is talk about bipolar disorder and bipolar depression in more general terms to give you an idea of what it is and to determine whether you might need to seek help about getting a diagnosis for you or a family member at bipolar treatment centers Massachusetts. One thing that certainly characterizes bipolar disorder is mood fluctuations that are really extreme and go between manic and depressive episodes.

When someone is having a manic episode, they’ll often experience periods of intense energy, enthusiasm for something, and perhaps impulse issues, too. However, during depressive episodes, they’ll have to deal with deep, profound sadness, lack of energy, and a sense of hopelessness. These mood swings can disrupt every element of daily life – including relationships – making things even harder, and why it’s so important to seek effective treatment. Whether it’s a manic episode or a depressive one, your mental wellbeing can suffer.

Heal from Bipolar Disorder
IOP in MA for Bipolar Disorder

Do You Qualify?

If you’re unsure whether you qualify for IOS psychiatric day treatment help for your bipolar disorder, it’s wise to speak to experts who can help you with a mental health evaluation. The outcome of this will ensure you get the treatment you need. Our IOS is for those over the age of 18.

Types Of Bipolar Disorder

It’s not that well known, as bipolar disorder is a catch-all kind of term that a lot of people assume is all there is to know, but there are actually a few different types of this disorder, and bipolar I and bipolar II are the most common.

Bipolar I Disorder

Bipolar I disorder is seen as including full-blown manic episodes that will usually be followed by a depressive type episode.

Bipolar II Disorder

On the other hand, bipolar II disorder has what’s known as hypomanic episodes (less severe than full mania but still hugely disruptive) coupled with depressive episodes. In other words, whether it’s manic or hypomanic episodes, it’s still a problem that needs to be dealt with.

Cyclothymic Disorder

This disorder is much rarer than the bipolar disorders mentioned above, and most sufferers find that their manic episode is not as extreme, and a mood stabilizer is often the ideal treatment.

The Importance Of Diagnosis

Getting an accurate diagnosis is the first step towards properly finding a treatment for bipolar disorder, and mental health professionals use criteria outlined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) to assess the symptoms of each person who comes to them for help. Once this has been done, the right treatment plan can be put into place, and that plan needs to be tailored for the individual patient, not just be the same for everyone; tailoring our treatment for mental wellness is something we’re proud to say we do as a matter of course. If the plan is unique, it’s much easier to control manic symptoms.

Of course, it’s important to remember as well that bipolar disorder can sometimes co-occur with other mental health issues, such as anxiety or even psychotic symptoms, and this just goes to show why a good and accurate (and early) diagnosis is so important.

Treating Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is, as we’ve seen, something that brings about intense and dramatic changes in mood, and it means those who are affected have to deal with some unique – and unpleasant – challenges every day. It’s not just them, either; their family members will have to go through the same things, albeit from a different perspective. It’s easy to see how much of an issue this can be in someone’s life. That’s why proper treatment for a bipolar disorder is so important. The good news is there are a number of highly effective treatment options for people with bipolar disorder. Here are some of them.

When it comes to finding the right treatment for bipolar disorder, you’ll typically find that it needs comprehensive treatment plans that are specifically designed to fit the patient’s needs. These plans often include a combination of therapeutic treatment options and, in some cases, medication. It’s important to remember that what works for one person might not work for another, which is why personalized care is so crucial, and that’s why individualized care is something we always offer to everyone, thanks to our exceptional mental health professional team.

For many people with bipolar disorder, mood swings are the biggest issue they have to contend with, which is why mood stabilizers are a crucial part of their treatment plan. These medications, such as lithium, help to level out the moods and prevent manic and depressive episodes. On top of this, taking the right medication in the right dosages (which is vital and is why you should only ever take medication prescribed by a doctor) can also reduce the problem of rapid cycling between the different ups and downs of mood that can take place.

In some cases, where the symptoms are very severe, healthcare professionals might think about using antipsychotic medications because these drugs can help hugely when it comes to the acute phases of bipolar disorder and might be what truly makes a positive difference to someone.

Talk therapy, which could include cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and interpersonal and social rhythm therapy (IPSRT), can play a big part in the treatment of bipolar disorder. CBT is particularly useful for many people with bipolar disorder as it helps people see what their negative thought patterns are, giving them the chance to change them before they lead to further mental health problems, including manic and depressive episodes. IPSRT, on the other hand, is more about regulating daily routines and patterns, and when this is in place, it can also be of benefit when it comes to mood changes.

Family focused therapy is another useful tool that people find helpful as a bipolar disorder treatment. This involves people’s loved ones in the treatment process, which means that families can understand the disorder much better, and everyone – including the patient – can develop coping skills that will stand them in good stead in the future.

There might be times when medication and traditional talk therapies aren’t enough, and that’s when electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) can be useful. ECT involves stimulating the brain using controlled electrical shocks, and it’s certainly not something that everyone needs or would want to try. However, when it comes to the most serious cases of bipolar disorder, it can work wonders. It’s wise to speak to experts before going down this path, though, as there’s so much to think about.

As well as everything professionals can do, there are some things that people with bipolar disorder can do for themselves, and these should be put in place right away as soon as a diagnosis is given. It’s amazing to think, but some small (in relative terms, at least) lifestyle adjustments can make a difference and can be a hugely effective complementary bipolar disorder treatment. This treatment of bipolar disorder aims to give patients more control.

Some of the things that might be involved in this would be managing stress, keeping to regular sleep patterns, and avoiding any kind of substance use. If you can do these things, you’ll be able to control your symptoms more and prevent manic episodes as much as possible. Of course, other treatments should be used at the same time, just to be sure that all is well and that the symptoms of bipolar disorder are controlled as well as possible.

Intensive Outpatient Service

Living with bipolar disorder can be a real roller coaster of mood swings, and that means timely and, vitally, effective treatment is essential. Intensive outpatient services (IOS) can make a world of difference to anyone who has to deal with bipolar disorder and the symptoms of bipolar disorder because they make fast access to treatment a priority, among other things. There are many reasons why finding a place on a great IOS, such as the one we can offer our patients in MA, is the best thing you can do.

IOS Programs are Less Restrictive

IOSs offer a much less restrictive treatment environment for those with bipolar disorder compared to inpatient care, and that’s a very positive thing. Unlike inpatient facilities, IOSs allow people to keep living in their own homes with their familiar possessions around them and with the family who is supporting them. They can keep going with their daily routines and be a lot more flexible when it comes to treatment and care. This means they can feel comfortable and keep things the same as usual, which means far less disruption – something that could cause an irritable mood at best and offers an increased risk of severe symptoms at worst.

No Overnight Stays

Something that many people with bipolar disorder find helpful when it comes to choosing an IOS over an inpatient clinic or other treatments for bipolar depression that might not be as beneficial when it comes to severe manic situations is that there are no overnight stays. Yet the treatments on offer, from therapy sessions to treat depression to mood stabilizers to treat bipolar disorder and manic symptoms associated with it, are still effective.

Since people can choose to go home at the end of the day, this can help them stick to their routines, but it also saves on cost, making IOPs more accessible to those who need help with a manic or depressive episode and various other mental illness conditions. They can also keep their connections with friends and family stronger, so support comes from many different angles.

Tailored Treatment Plans

IOSs have a vast range of benefits and something that those with bipolar disorder who have to deal with a major depressive episode or depressive symptoms is that their care will be specifically tailored to them. No matter what their manic or depressive episodes look like, the experts who are creating the ideal bipolar disorder treatment plan will look at each patient individually and use the information they get from talking to them, listening to them, and their own in-depth knowledge to determine precisely what kind of treatment is needed.

Whether it’s a mood stabilizer, bipolar disorder medications and prescription drugs, or any of the therapies we’ve mentioned above, the right treatment plan will be put in place. Plus, thanks to continuous treatment, it will be easy to see when things need to be changed to keep up with mood disorders, manic depression, and other symptoms that might occur over time. If you want to manage bipolar disorder well, a tailored treatment plan will definitely help.

Supporting Family Involvement

Family therapy can be a huge help with bipolar mood episodes. It’s something that can, when done right, help people to control symptoms, including severe depression and other mental disorders. That’s why it makes sense that IOSs continue that idea and, as well as the therapy itself, the flexible scheduling and outpatient element of the bipolar disorder help and treatment means people can be together more. They’ll attend therapy together, but they’ll also be at home together where they can keep talking, perhaps opening up even more than during their therapy. They might feel more comfortable talking about how a hypomanic episode makes them feel or why they feel social rhythm therapy is the right step to take, for example. With an IOS, all this – and much more – is possible.

Better Stability

If there’s one thing that someone with bipolar disorder knows, it’s that changes to routine can bring about a manic or hypomanic episode. This means they need to take their mood stabilizing medication to prevent major depression from following – or vice versa. Depression symptoms and bipolar symptoms are not pleasant, and the issue is that feeling them can worsen mood symptoms to a huge degree.

This is why it’s so important to be as stable as possible. Although you can manage stress and deal with mild depression and other issues as well as possible on your own, when you can also rely on your treatment being stable because you know you can always attend, no matter what else is happening, you’ll do much better, and your bipolar disorder can be kept under control.

Contact Us Today

If you need help with your bipolar disorder and you feel that an intensive outpatient treatment center would be the best thing for you, don’t hesitate to get in touch – we understand what you need, and we understand your fears and concerns, and you can rest assured that we’ll be able to help you. We can create the ideal bipolar disorder treatment plan that will work for you and help you reach your mental health goals.

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