Diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder and Treatment Methods: Medication and Psychotherapy

Bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression or manic depressive psychosis, is a psychiatric disorder characterized by mood swings. 
Hormonal imbalances may cause bipolar disorder. 
Mental stress, substance abuse, or some other traumatic event can also contribute to triggering bipolar disorder. 
Diagnosis of bipolar disorder requires at least one manic or hypomanic episode and one depressive psychosis. 
Proper and effective treatment is an important and decisive factor to reduce the onset and severity of manic and depressive episodes. 
Some medicines or psychotherapy can help the patient to live in a balanced and more pleasant way.
bipolar disorder
Diagnosis of bipolar disorder and treatment of manic depression

Bipolar Disorder - Diagnosis and Treatment Methods: Medication and Psychotherapy

Bipolar Disorder: Introduction

Bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression, is a mental disorder characterized by extreme mood swings.

Symptoms can include a very high mood called mania and episodes of depression. It is worth noting that the average age at which symptoms of bipolar disorder is 25 years.

People with bipolar disorder have difficulty managing day-to-day tasks at school or work or maintaining relationships.

Although bipolar disease is chronic, it is possible to control its symptoms when following an appropriate treatment plan.

There are four major types of bipolar disorder such as bipolar I disorder, bipolar II disorder, cyclothymic disorder, and others.
All characterized by clear changes in mood, activity levels, and energy.

These moods range from episodes of mania, as well as depression, with the possibility of hypomanic episodes.

Diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder

When the physician suspects that the person in front of him suffers from bipolar disorder, he is likely to recommend a number of medical tests and psychological diagnoses.

All of these contribute to the denial of a number of other problems, help in the development of a specific diagnosis and determine whether there are other complications related to this disorder.
To determine if you have bipolar disorder, the series of tests and diagnoses include:

Physical examination: Your doctor may perform physical tests and laboratory tests to identify any medical problems that may be causing your symptoms.

Psychological assessment:  Your doctor may refer you to a psychiatrist, who will talk to you about your thoughts, feelings, and patterns of behavior. You may also fill out a self-assessment or questionnaire.
Close family members or friends may be asked for your permission to provide information about the symptoms you are experiencing.

Mood Chart:  Your doctor can use a mood chart to track bipolar disorder.
You may be asked to record moods in how your mood varies, sleep patterns in how many time you sleep or other factors that can help diagnose and find appropriate treatment.

Bipolar disorder diagnostic criteria: Your psychiatrist may compare your symptoms with the criteria for bipolar disorder and related disorders in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition (DSM-5).  
This manual is published by the American Psychiatric Association and is approved by mental health professionals for the purpose of diagnosing diseases and mental disorders, and is adopted by different insurance companies in order to estimate the value of compensation for the treatment of the disorder.

The criteria for diagnosing manic depression are based on the diagnosis of the specific type of bipolar disorder and on the history and type of seizures, such as mania, hypomania or depression.

The person with the disorder must talk with his doctor about all the specific types of the patient, in order to increase his personal knowledge of the health status and to be aware of ways and means of treating.

Diagnosis of childhood bipolar disorder
Although the diagnosis of children and adolescents with bipolar disorder has the same criteria as adults, the symptoms in children and adolescents often have different patterns and may not be strictly proportional to the diagnostic categories.

Also, children with bipolar disorder are often diagnosed with mental health disorders such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) or behavioral problems, which may make the diagnosis more complex.
A referral to a pediatric psychiatrist with bipolar disorder is recommended.

What is the Most Effective Treatment for Bipolar Disorder?

Bipolar disorder
Diagnosis of bipolar disorder and treatment of manic depression

Treatment of Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder (manic depression) is a long-term medical condition that necessitates the use of various medications on a daily basis to treat manic depression throughout life, including periods in which the patient's feeling improves.

The treatment of bipolar disorder is often accompanied by constant and continuous counseling from the psychiatrist, who has the appropriate qualifications to address the disorder
However, other people may be involved in the therapeutic process, including psychotherapists, social workers, and mental health nurses.
This is because bipolar disorder may affect many areas of the patient's daily life.

The appropriate and effective treatment is vital and decisive factor to reduce the frequency of the onset of manic and depressive episodes and reduce the severity, and the treatment helps the patient to exercise his daily life in a balanced and more enjoyable way.

Preventive therapy is also a very important component, especially as it continues during the period of the disease's calmness and decline.

People with bipolar disorder who are not given preventive and permanent treatment are at increased risk of recurrence of symptoms of the disease at higher and faster rates.
They also make themselves more prone to moderate episodes of hypomania or severe depressive episodes.

If the patient also has any problems with alcohol or addictive substances, he should also be given treatment because of the severe adverse effects of bipolar disorder.
Treatment focuses on symptom management.
Depending on your needs, treatment may include:

Pharmaceutical:  You will often need to start taking medications to balance your mood immediately.

Continuous therapy:  Bipolar disorder requires lifelong medication therapy, even during periods of improvement, where people who go beyond treatment are at high risk of relapse or mild mood changes that turn into complete obsession or depression.

Daily treatment programs:  Your doctor may recommend a daily treatment program. These programs provide the support and advice you need when controlling symptoms.

Treatment of drug abuse:  If you have problems with alcohol or drugs, you will also need treatment for drug abuse. Failure to do so may be very difficult to manage bipolar disorder.

Hospitalization:  Your doctor may recommend that you go to the hospital if your conditions are critical and serious, such as feeling suicide or becoming detached from reality.
Access to psychiatric treatment at the hospital may help keep you calm, safe and steady in your mood, whether you have a bout of obsession or depression.

Basic treatments for bipolar disorder include medication and psychological counseling for symptom control, and may also include education and support groups.
The main and central treatments adopted to deal with bipolar disorder include:

Drug Therapy
Drug therapy is an important central compound in the treatment of bipolar disorder. Because drug therapy usually causes severe side effects - although rare - a patient may be stopped from taking prescribed drugs.
In this case, he should go to his psychiatrist in the mental health department to change the treatment to give him the most effective and most appropriate treatment, personally.

A combination of drugs is used to treat bipolar disorder. The types and doses of drugs have been described based on the specific symptoms they experience.
Medications for bipolar disorder may include:

Mood stabilizers:  You will usually need mood-stabilizing medication to control manic episodes or hypomania.
Examples include Lithium stabilizers (Lithobid), valproic acid (Depakene), carbamazepine (Tegretol, and other drugs)and lamotrigine (Lamictal).

Antipsychotics:  If the symptoms of depression or obsession persist with other drugs, the addition of an antipsychotic drug such as olanzapine), risperidone, quetiapine, aripiprazole (Abilify), Geodon, lurasidone (latuda).
Your doctor may recommend some medications alone or with mood stabilizers.

Antidepressants: Your doctor may add an antidepressant to help control depression. Because an antidepressant sometimes causes a manic episode, it is often described as a mood stabilizer or antipsychotic.

Antidepressant – antipsychotic:  The combination of antidepressants and antipsychotics can be used for the treatment of depressive episodes and mood swings.

Anti-anxiety agent (anxiolytic): Benzodiazepines may be useful for treating anxiety or improving sleep but are usually used for a short period of time.

Psychotropic drugs such as Zyprexa (Olanzapine), Risperidone (Risperdal), which can help those who do not benefit from antiviral drugs (Convulsions).
As well as anti-anxiety drugs, such as benzodiazepines, this may help improve the quality of sleep.
In addition, a certain drug, Quetiapine, has been confirmed by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as an effective treatment for bipolar disorder and manic depression.

How to Find the Right Medications for Your Bipolar Disorder
Finding the right medication may require some testing and error. If none of them work for you, there are many others to try.
This process requires patience, as some medications need weeks to months to achieve their full effect.

One drug is changed at a time so your doctor can determine which medication is effective in relieving your symptoms with the least annoying side effects.
Drugs may also need to be adjusted as symptoms change.

Side Effects of Bipolar Medication
Minor side effects often occur with the discovery of appropriate medications and dosages that suit you, and your body adapts to these drugs.
Talk to your doctor or mental health professional if you experience annoying side effects.
Do not make any changes to your treatment or stop using your medications.
If you stop using your medications, you may experience withdrawal effects or your symptoms may worsen or reappear.
You may become very depressed or have suicidal thoughts or have a manic or manic disorder.
If you think you need to change your treatment, contact your doctor.

What Psychotherapy is Used for Bipolar Disorder?
Psychotherapy is an important part of treating bipolar disease and can be provided as cognitive-behavioral therapy, family or group therapy.
Many types of treatment may be helpful. These include:

Psychotherapy for Bipolar Disorder
Interpersonal and social rhythm therapy (IPSRT): Personal therapy and social rhythm focus on the stability of daily routines, such as sleep, walking and meal times. Static routines allow mood management to be improved.
People with bipolar disorder may benefit from a daily routine of sleep, diet, and exercise.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT): The focus is to identify unhealthy and negative beliefs and behaviors and replace them with healthy and positive ones.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy can help identify the causes of bipolar attacks.
The person also learns effective methods of managing stress and adapting to uncomfortable situations.

Psychological Education:  Learning about bipolar disorder can help you and your loved ones understand the situation you are going through.
Understanding what can happen can help you get the best support, identify problems, and develop a plan to prevent relapse and adherence to treatment.

Family-focused therapy:  Family support and communication can help you adhere to the treatment plan, and you and your loved ones can help you recognize and manage the warning signs that indicate the mood change.

Other Therapeutic Options
Depending on your needs, other treatments can be added to treat your depression, including:

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT): This treatment is mostly intended for people with severe depressive episodes accompanied by suicidal ideation, or for people who do not feel better symptoms despite treatment with many other treatments.

During ECT, electrical currents are passed through the brain, deliberately causing a short seizure.
ECT seems to lead to changes in brain chemistry that can reflect the symptoms of some mental illness.

ECT may be an option to treat bipolar disorder if you do not improve by taking medication or you cannot take antidepressants for health reasons such as pregnancy or you are at high risk of committing suicide.

Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS):  This technique is being investigated as an option for people who do not respond to antidepressants.
manic depression
Diagnosis of bipolar disorder and Treatment of manic depression
Treatment of manic depression in children and adolescents
Treatment methods in children and adolescents are generally determined on a case-by-case basis, depending on the symptoms and side effects of drugs, among other factors. In general, treatment includes:

Pharmaceutical: Children and adolescents with bipolar disorder are often prescribed the same types of drugs as adults.
Research on the safety and efficacy of bipolar disorder drugs in children is lower than that of adults, so remedial decisions are often based on adult research.

Psychotherapy:  Initial and long-term treatment may help prevent symptom recurrence.
Psychotherapy can help children and adolescents manage their routines, develop adaptive skills, address learning difficulties, solve social problems, and help them strengthen family ties and communication.
If necessary, it may help to treat common drug addiction problems among older children and adolescents with bipolar disorder.

Psychological Education: Psychological education can include learning the symptoms of bipolar disorder and its differences with behaviors related to the child's age development, attitudes, and appropriate cultural behavior.
Recognizing bipolar disorder may also help in supporting the child.

The support:  Collaborating with teachers and social workers and encouraging support from family and friends can help identify services and encourage success.

Lifestyle and Home Remedies
You will probably need to make lifestyle changes to stop the stages of behaviors that increase bipolar disorder. Here are some steps to take:

Stop drinking alcohol or taking recreational drugs: One of the biggest concerns of bipolar disorder is the negative consequences of risk behaviors and alcohol or drug addiction.
Ask for help if you have difficulty taking off on your own.

You can configure sound relationships: Treat yourself to people with a positive impact.
Friends and family members can provide support and help monitor warning signs of mood changes.

You can create a healthy daily diet: A regular daily diet of sleep, eating, and physical activity can help balance your mood.
Check with your doctor before starting any exercise programs. Follow a healthy diet.
If you are taking lithium, talk to your doctor about proper fluids and salts.
If you have trouble sleeping, talk to your doctor or mental health professional about what you can do.

Check first before taking other drugs: Call your doctor for bipolar disorder before taking prescription drugs or any supplements or over-the-counter medications.
Sometimes, some other drugs lead to bouts of depression or obsession or may interfere with the drugs you are taking to treat bipolar disorder.

Consider keeping a mood chart: Keeping a record of moods, treatments, sleep, activities, and emotions can help identify causes and options for effective treatment and when treatment needs to be modified.

Alternative Treatments
Some patients with bipolar disorder may resort to alternative or complementary therapies, seeking ways to control symptoms, improve their mood and reduce their psychological stress as much as possible.

These may include resort to prayer or spiritual religious therapy, meditation, and food addicts, such as vitamins or plant-based medicines.

There is not much research on complementary or alternative medicine - or complementary medicine as sometimes called - and bipolar disorder.

Most studies revolve around severe depression, so it is unclear how these nontraditional methods work with bipolar disorder.

If you choose one of the methods of alternative or complementary medicine in addition to the treatment recommended by the doctor, take some precautions first:

Do not stop taking prescribed medications or absent from treatment sessions.
Alternative or complementary medicine is not a substitute for regular medical care when it comes to treating bipolar disorder.

Be explicit with doctors and mental health professionals. Tell them exactly which of the alternative or complementary medicine treatments you follow or want to try.

Be aware of potential risks. Alternative or complementary products are not controlled as medications are prescribed by a physician.
The fact that these products are natural does not mean they are safe.

Before using alternative or complementary medicines, talk to your doctor about the risks, including potentially serious interference with your prescription drugs.

Prevention of Bipolar Disorder
There is no safe and proven way to prevent bipolar disorder, but the immediate treatment offered immediately after the onset of the initial symptoms of this psychological problem, or other, will help prevent the deterioration and aggravation of manic depressive disorder.

Long-term prophylaxis can also help prevent the transformation of moderate bipolar fits into acute or severe manic or depressive episodes.
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