Bipolar disorder, commonly known as manic depression is a challenging mental illness that causes extreme highs and extreme lows in mood. People suffering from the illness go from very happy, up and active, to very sad and hopeless, down and inactive, then back again. They often have normal moods in between. The up feeling is called mania and the down feeling is depression.
During the manic phase, a person may feel as if they have an endless supply of energy. On the other hand, when the depressive phase steps in, the affected person may feel down and low, lose interest in activities they once enjoyed, and may even become suicidal.
Nevertheless, It is difficult to live with bipolar disorder but is does not mean that you cannot lead a fulfilling and productive life. Understanding the signs and symptoms and seeking professional help are the first few steps to managing your illness and staying on track. However, beyond the treatment, there are many steps you can take to help yourself; including surrounding yourself with people you count on, making healthy lifestyle choices, and monitoring your moods.
Educate yourself about early symptoms
If you are well aware of the early symptoms of the onset of bipolar disorder, you can take preventive measures. Identifying certain stressors, time of year or other factors that trigger symptoms may help discover an emerging episode. There are many excellent sources of information on bipolar disorder.
Get as much information as you can from reputed websites or books. Find out about symptoms and treatments. Leaning more about it is the easiest way you can learn to overcome it. Read some good self-help books and get an in depth knowledge about the bipolar disorder and techniques to improve it. Help yourself as well as your family and friends to understand the illness you have. It would make it easy for you and others to help you cope with it.
Develop a healthy routine
When you break the routine, there are chances of running into the problem. This may sound boring but it is one part of the fact that it also makes you a healthy person. Get up in the morning, go to work, come home, eat healthy or do other activities you do on regular basis, get a good night sleep and stick to the routine. Our mind and body are easier to work with if they know what is coming their way.
Eat well balanced diet and get enough sleep. Stress free activities can bring about a great change in your daily routine. Practice yoga and meditation on regular basis as these could make you feel relaxed and focused. Make sure you work to keep a regular schedule, and to have positive mental and physical health.
Keep away from alcohol and drugs
During both, depressive and manic phases, drugs appear to be attractive options to slow down or to perk up. The potential damage to your mental and physical health could possibly affect your way to recovery. Bipolar disorder need not be chronic and recovery is possible. Great recovery tools are hope, love, support, and a routine of work.
Most importantly, you should see a mental health professional who has enough experience in providing the treatment to the people who suffer from bipolar personality disorder. A health professional needs to do a complete mental health assessment, with questions about current symptoms, past history such as suicide attempts, medical history, relationships and family background such as childhood trauma.