Bipolar disorder is a mental illness characterized by alternating emotional highs and lows, which are referred to as manic and depressive episodes. A manic episode is marked by excitement and impulsive behavior, while a depressive episode is marked by a lack of energy and low self-esteem.
If you’ve been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, its symptoms may put you under the impression that living a happy, successful life is rather a distant reality. However, as challenging as it is, living well with bipolar disorder is possible. This entails not only seeking proper treatment but also making healthy choices and developing various coping strategies that will help you take significant control over your symptoms.
Here are some of the things that you can do to help you live your best life despite the debilitating nature of bipolar disorder:
Get a good understanding of your condition.
All too often, people with bipolar disorder do not only suffer from the symptoms associated with the mental condition itself but from the lingering social stigma and discrimination as well. These usually stem from inadequate knowledge about the mental condition.
The more you know about bipolar disorder, the better you can handle the negative treatment you are getting because of it. Become an expert on your own condition by doing in-depth research into it. This way, you can educate the people you directly associate with about bipolar disorder. Once they get a better insight into it, they will learn to put their assumptions aside and treat you with more compassion.
Adopt a healthy routine and adhere to it.
Establishing a healthy routine can be achieved by the little things that you do on a daily basis. Here are some of the simple lifestyle habits that you can build that will help you form a healthy routine, and ultimately, effectively manage your symptoms.
Maintaining a Stable Sleep Pattern
This will help you ensure balance in your serotonin levels. Serotonin is a brain chemical known to affect your mood in a way that may lead to depression.
Practicing Relaxation Techniques
Deep breathing, meditation, and yoga are effective at helping you improve your mood, reduce stress, and get you back on an even keel.
Staying Away from Alcohol and/or Drugs
While it may be tempting to slip into bad habits like drinking alcohol or taking drugs, keep in mind that these will only make your symptoms worse. A single drink or dose can interfere with your sleep pattern, mood, or even with the medications that you’re taking for your condition.
Build a strong support system.
Social disconnectedness or isolation can make you vulnerable to depression, so having a good support system is instrumental in ensuring your mental well-being. Having someone to talk to can make a lot of difference especially in brightening your mood and boosting your motivation.
Simply spending time with people you know who understand what you are going through can be very therapeutic. Joining a support group can be beneficial for you as well, as you can learn a lot from the advice and shared experiences of your group members.
Seek psychiatric help and be an active participant in your own treatment.
Getting involved in your own treatment is one of the things you can do to successfully manage bipolar disorder. Study up on your symptoms, so you know the best thing to do when they creep in.
Medications such as mood stabilizers and antidepressants are a crucial component in your treatment for bipolar disorder, so take them as instructed.
Using everything that you’ve learned, make sure to collaborate with a reliable psychiatrist in the entire treatment process. Don’t hesitate to ask questions. Keep in mind that your partnership with your doctor will have a great impact on how well your course of treatment will turn out.
Seeking Bipolar Disorder Treatment in New York, NY, and Southbury, CT
If you’re looking to partner up with a highly experienced psychiatrist for the effective management of your bipolar disorder, you’re in good hands with Dr. Mark Stracks. He has been known for his calm and comforting demeanor as well as his extensive experience in treating patients with bipolar disorder using a customized approach.
At Psy-Visions, we deeply care about how well you are coping with your psychiatric condition. If you have questions or would like to make an appointment with Dr. Stracks, call (718) 887-2918 in New York and (203) 405-1745 in Connecticut or use our secure online request form.