Bipolar disorder – once known as manic depression – is a serious and disabling brain disorder characterized by an unstable mood, with episodes of both high energy (manic episodes) and low energy (depressive episodes) representing the two “poles” that give bipolar disorder its name.
Bipolar disorder symptoms vary widely from person to person and bipolar disorder can be difficult to diagnose, even by trained mental health practitioners. Some bipolar disorder symptoms in the manic or hypomanic state include:
Bipolar symptoms in the depressive episodes can generally resemble the standard symptoms of depression. Episodes can last for days, weeks or months – even years in rare cases. Over 60% of people who suffer from bipolar disorder were originally misdiagnosed. Left untreated, bipolar disorder usually gets worse – sometimes culminating in suicide.
At Cottonwood, we know that, with proper care, bipolar patients can live happy and productive lives. In bipolar disorder treatment, our board certified medical director is skilled at using non-addictive mood stabilizing medications to manage the symptoms of mania and depression. Counseling for bipolar patients usually centers on helping the person develop more adaptive mood stabilization skills while identifying attitudes, behavior or environmental stressors that can trigger mood instability or lead to non-adherence with their medication regime. Here too, our behavioral health dietitians can work with patients to design a skillful diet and exercise program can help those suffering from bipolar disorder optimize the conditions that best promote mood stability while at our bipolar disorder treatment program.