Bipolar Disorder Treatment in Atlanta, GA
What is Bipolar Disorder?
Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition. Oftentimes, it causes sporadic shifts in mood, concentration, and energy. In the past, it was called "Manic-Depressive disorder." This mental illness produces shifts between high-energy mood states (mania) and low-energy mood states (depression). In addition, both the intensity and rapid shift of mood swings have negative impacts on daily functioning, well-being, relationships, and safety.
Types of Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar I is characterized by a significant manic episode and a major depressive episode. Symptoms of a manic episode (mania) include:
- High energy
- Lack of sleep
- Tracing thoughts
- An exaggerated sense of confidence
- Snd sometimes psychosis
For a Bipolar I diagnosis to be established the manic episode must last at least 7 days. Or, the episode may become so intense it requires hospitalization. The depressive episode must last for at least 2 weeks. Sometimes, symptoms of mania and depression can occur at the same time. This is called a "mixed episode."
Bipolar II is characterized by a lower-level manic episode, called "hypomania." The depressive episode of Bipolar II is usually about the same or worse than Bipolar I. The depressive symptoms can include:
- Feelings of worthlessness
- Overwhelming sadness
- Poor concentration
- Loss of interest or pleasure
- Thoughts of suicide
Cyclothymic Disorder (Cyclothymia)
Cyclothymia is characterized by multiple hypomanic episodes. These are also accompanied by depressive symptoms for at least 2 years. However, this is only 1 year for children and teens. In addition, symptoms do not meet the criteria for a full-blown manic or depressive episode.
Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder
Depending on the severity of a manic episode or depressive episode, people often suffer from these symptoms:
Manic Episode and Hypomania
Mania and hypomania are 2 separate types of episodes. But, they share the same symptoms. Mania is more noticeable and more severe than hypomania in both intensity and impact on daily functioning. In many cases, hypomania begins and then becomes full-blown mania. A diagnosis of a manic or hypomanic episode includes at least 3 of these symptoms:
- Decreased need for sleep
- Racing thoughts
- Increased energy
- Euphoria and exaggerated self-confidence
- Hyperverbal (fast talking)
- Feeling wired or jumpy
- Feeling unusually important
- High risk taking - recklessness with money, food, substances, and sex.
Depressive episodes are characterized by symptoms that include:
- Lack of interest in hobbies or pleasurable things
- Low sex drive
- Loss of appetite
- Overwhelming negative thoughts
- Increased anger and irritability
- Excessive sleeping
- Difficulty with concentration
- Substance abuse
- Thoughts of suicide
Diagnosing Bipolar Disorder
Diagnosing Bipolar disorder early on is vital. This is because early intervention allows time to find appropriate treatment. It also reduces needless suffering and impairment. Have you or someone you know displayed any of the symptoms listed above? If so, then it is important to seek out a doctor, psychotherapist, or psychologist. Licensed and trained professionals collect important information such as family history, medical history, and personal reports of symptoms through the assessment process. By doing so, a bipolar disorder therapist determines a diagnosis.
Treating Bipolar Disorder
After an appropriate diagnosis is made it's vital to move ahead with a two-pronged approach. This involves medication management and psychotherapy. A doctor, usually a psychiatrist, prescribes medication specific to the precise diagnosis. This allows for better mood stability and a reduction in the severity of symptoms. Talk therapy is best suited for Bipolar disorder treatment. Regular bipolar disorder treatment allows those who suffer from Bipolar disorder to become more aware of their symptoms, take action, and develop strong coping skills. Bipolar disorder treatment is most successful when both medication management and regular psychotherapy are involved.
Living with Bipolar Disorder
Many people can live productive and healthy lives with Bipolar disorder. But, it is a lifelong mental illness. People you may know have Bipolar disorder and you would never be able to tell. Depending on the diagnosis the outcomes are optimistic. But, this will depend on factors like the severity of symptoms, and adherence to treatment. Thankfully, as mental health disorders and treatment are becoming less stigmatized, people are seeking help. Yet, early intervention is still key.
Begin Bipolar Disorder Treatment in Atlanta, GA
Are you or someone you know suffering from the symptoms of Bipolar disorder? If so, contact us today and one of our specialists will be ready to help! Our team of caring therapists would be honored to offer support from our Atlanta, GA-based therapy practice. To start your therapy journey, please follow these simple steps:
- Contact North Atlanta Psychotherapy
- Meet with a caring therapist
- Start overcoming your anxiety symptoms!
Other Services Offered with North Atlanta Psychotherapy
Bipolar disorder treatment isn't the only service our Atlanta, GA-based practice offers. We are happy to also offer support for a variety of mental health services including anxiety treatment, depression therapy, play therapy, and grief counseling. We also provide support for men, couples, teens, and children. Feel free to also learn more about how we can support those with OCD, or visit our blog to learn more today!