Bipolar DisorderBipolar Treatment

Let's Talk About Bipolar Disorder Treatment

Getting a diagnosis of bipolar disorder can be scary. But now that you’ve pinpointed the problem, you can do all the right things to treat it. Bipolar is not curable, but it is manageable.

    Our Pro PanelBipolar Disorder Treatment

    We went to some of the nation's top experts in bipolar disorder to bring you the most up-to-date information possible.

    Po Wang, M.D. headshot

    Po Wang, M.D.Psychiatrist and Clinic Chief

    Bipolar Disorders Clinic at Stanford University Department of Psychiatry
    Linda Hubbard, L.M.F.T. headshot

    Linda Hubbard, L.M.F.T.Therapist

    Department of Behavioral Health, Psychiatry & Psychology at the Mayo Clinic
    Adam Rosenblatt, M.D.

    Adam Rosenblatt, M.D.Clinical Director of the Behavioral Health Unit and Geriatric Psychiatry

    University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health System
    How Bipolar Messes with Time
    Mental Health

    The Biggest Myths About Living with Mental Illness

    Those that have a mental illness know that these myths are exactly that: myths. Take a look for yourself.

    Frequently Asked QuestionsBipolar Disorder Treatment

    Is individual therapy the only option for bipolar?

    No, other types of therapy can be helpful as well. Family and couples therapy can help your loved ones understand the disorder better and can help the family as a whole build healthier communication, problem-solving skills, and the necessary knowledge to be able to spot a manic episode when it’s happening. Group therapy can give you a safe place to discuss your fears, challenges, and overall feelings with others who are going through some of the same experiences.

    What’s the difference between DBT and CBT?

    Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) focuses on our thoughts and behaviors—the idea is that thoughts influence our feelings, so if we change the way we think about situations, we can also improve how we feel. Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) focuses on developing specific skills to help you change your behavior patterns (as opposed to “thinking your way through” the issue).

    Why is it so important to recognize the early signs of mania?

    Bipolar is a life-long illness. If you and those around you can get better at recognizing the signs early on, you’ll be able to head off a bout of full-blown mania—and with it, the potential for doing risky or harmful things, like blowing up your relationship or drinking too much or going on a shopping spree.

    Is electroconvulsive therapy painful?

    Contrary to how it may look in the movies, ECT is not painful. People are given muscle relaxants, and they’re under anesthesia, so although the procedure induces a seizure, the patient doesn’t feel anything.

    • Dialectical Behavior Therapy for Bipolar: Journal of Behavioral Therapy. (2017). “Dialectical Behavior Therapy Group Skills Training for Bipolar Disorder.”
    • Dialectical Behavior Therapy for Teens with Bipolar: Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychoparmacology. (2015). “Dialectical Behavior Therapy for Adolescents with Bipolar Disorder: Results from a Pilot Randomized Trial.”
    • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Bipolar: PloS One. (2017). “Efficacy of cognitive-behavioral therapy in patients with bipolar disorder: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.”
    • Effectiveness of ECT: Current Neuropharmacology. (2017). “The Role of Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) in Bipolar Disorder: Effectiveness in 522 Patients with Bipolar Depression, Mixed-state, Mania and Catatonic Features.”
    Leslie Pepper

    Leslie Pepper

    Leslie Pepper is a freelance writer specializing in health, nutrition, fitness, and wellness.