Bipolar Disorder Treatment and Hospitalization
Bipolar Disorder treatments can vary depending on the severity of symptoms, acuity of onset and available support. At times you may need the safety of a hospital and the medical work-up necessary to assure accurate diagnosis. Bipolar Disorder treatment in the hospital setting includes assessing your personal strengths, your supports and any immediate diagnostic and treatment challenges you face. While there, you will make adjustments in your treatment including personal and family education, support management, personal habit skills training, medication optimization, post-hospital goal setting and support optimization. You will receive help to educate those close to you about what has happened, what to expect and how best they can help. Bipolar Disorder treatment usually include medication in all but the mildest symptoms to bring complete remission and to help prevent relapse. Preserving our processing speed is a major goal as each reoccurrence can result in neurotoxicity.
Bipolar Disorder and Intensive Outpatient Therapy (IOP)
You may decide to continue a sustained level of intensive support post discharge by choosing an Intensive Outpatient therapy Program (IOP). Likely many of those you met in this hospital will join you to further mutual gains and healing. This rapport building is also extended to your family promoting a deeper understanding of what is going on and the healing that is available to everyone involved. Often treatment for Bipolar Disorder includes outpatient group support that can be initiated during IOP. Often members of the National Association for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) may attend and encourage support from one of the many NAMI support groups in your area.
Medication education is ongoing through this process as you will want to become an expert on the medications you are taking including what to watch for and learning how to efficiently chart your progress. Bipolar Disorder has an 80% inheritance and most people have many family members with at least a few of the symptoms. So things will help you and potentially other family members. Strategies that work for you have a much greater chance of working for family members who may right now be struggling!
Given the relative lack of education regarding this illness, many continue to suffer the ravages of self-medicating with drugs or alcohol (typically alcohol, MJ and pain medications) so educational efforts may need to extend to AA, NA and other groups that may prove helpful. Without adequate treatment traumatic family relationships, lost careers, poverty, legal issues and lost lives are the norm. With treatment you have a much greater chance of sustaining your wellness and moving on with your life.
One of the best ways to move on is to grow your relationships by 1% each day and recording what you have learned and achieved each night. This is one of the approaches used in the Oneness Approach.
Time to Recovery with Bipolar Disorder Treatment - Processing speed
Given what we have discussed so far, you can imagine that one might enjoy a little support through this process. This is particularly relevant the first six months to a year after a major depressive or manic episode. This is the same amount of time it frequently takes for a person to recover from any difficult disturbance in the brain. This can be most evident in your concentration and processing speed that may take as long as a year to recover.
This is why you may feel better as the months go by and you are able to return to school, your career and a normal home life. Early on you may note feeling easily overwhelmed with seemingly minor expectations. This part of the illness can be difficult to document as it usually continues for a few months after your mood has improved. You may need to ask your therapist to specifically measure and address this concern with specific mental exercises. This allows you to document your initial needs for accommodations at school or in the work place until you have had the time to fully heal. You will need your therapist's documentation of your progress to enjoy the rights available under the Title 1 of the Americans with Disabilities act.
Bipolar Disorder treatment includes addressing the need for mutual understanding, love and support from everyone in your life. Your mood may improve over the first several weeks to months but consequences in your home, at work, and with your friends usually requires more time. Sustained compassionate efforts from and toward everyone involved works....especially your compassion towards yourself!