9 Ways To Cope With Bipolar Disorder
9 Ways To Cope With Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder otherwise known as manic depression is a mental health condition associated with different episodes of mood swings and changes in regular sleep patterns, behavior, energy, and thinking. These episodes can last for weeks and in some cases, months. A person diagnosed with bipolar disorder can find it exhausting and disturbing. Here are ways to cope with bipolar disorder.
Bipolar disorder involves changes in mood and behavior. Coping with this can be very difficult which is why it is necessary to discover and understand the causes or triggers of these mood swings. These moods can alternate between joyful, sad, energetic, and then depressed.
Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder
The symptoms of bipolar disorder can be very exhausting and may make you lose interest in things that you enjoy, make you feel irritated with things that you adore, and sometimes make you start loving things that you once hated. Below are the common symptoms of bipolar disorder:
- Increased activity, agitation, or energy
- Decreased ability to concentrate or think.
- Feelings of inappropriate guilt.
- Decreased or increased need for sleep.
- Risk-taking behaviors.
- Unusual racing thoughts.
- A sense of distraction or boredom.
- Excessive happiness and excitement.
- A sense of worthlessness.
Bipolar disorder makes it challenging and hard to get through the day. There’s no cure whatsoever for bipolar disorder but some certain steps or ways to cope with bipolar disorder and fight its negative effects. Here are nine ways to cope with bipolar disorder and boost your mood during an episode:
Learn to Manage Stress
Stress itself is something that causes feelings of irritation and unnecessary aggression. Coping with the mood swings associated with bipolar disorder, it is not advisable to put your body through stress. Learn to manage and relieve your stress levels.
Learn to manage stress both in your personal and professional life. Keeping your stress levels under control goes a long way in dealing with bipolar disorder. Don’t overdo things and ensure to take necessary breaks in between anything you put yourself through. When things start to get overwhelming for you, take time to yourself and keep yourself calm and collected. If your job or lifestyle is causing you stress, think of the possible changes to implement or better ways to manage or eliminate the stress factor, if you can.
Another way to cope with bipolar disorder is education. The more you know about what exactly is wrong with you and the various things that trigger it, the more you’ll be able to help yourself out of every situation or episode. When you continue to feed yourself and educate yourself with more knowledge about bipolar disorder you’ll be able to react appropriately during each episode and you’ll be able to control and tame yourself from doing negative things.
This education starts with you learning and understanding the symptoms and triggers of bipolar disorder and updating yourself on any research options that come up. You can share your questions or observations with your doctor or therapist. Doing this will assist you in coping with each episode of your bipolar disorder.
Keep a Journal
A journal is where all the magical things happen. It is a place that you can vent and lament all your worries and happiness. It is also a place where you can keep a record of all your activities and doings. Taking note of the happening in your life is one of the ways to cope with bipolar disorder.
You can keep a journal to take records of your daily activities and events, stress levels, sleep pattern, and eating and drinking habits. Keeping records of these things will help to remind and prepare you ahead of your mood swings, help to take note of your triggers, and assist in implementing the right preventive measures for your episodes.
Establish a Healthy Routine
Another way to cope with bipolar disorder is by establishing a healthy routine. Create time to spend exercise or take a walk to stabilize your mood, get proper sleep to reduce the risk of mood swings, spend time in nature to calm and purify your mind. You can also create time to spend with your loved ones which will give more positive energy, attend to all your doctor’s appointments, and don’t forget to create time for yourself to relieve stress and free yourself of the day’s burden.
Stay Active and Connected
People with bipolar disorder tend to isolate themselves from others because of this ideology of not wanting to harm or offend people whenever they’re having any of their episodes. Lack of connection with others can lead to loneliness or boredom which can automatically put you at risk of depression.
Surround yourself with your loved ones and people that give you positive energy. Don’t stay idle and go to wherever you wish or want to go. This will keep you active, prevent you from being lonely or bored and prevent you from having any suicidal thoughts. Speak to your therapist or doctor when you notice any changes in your health and share with them your worries and troubles. They’re great listeners.
Practice Healthy Sleep Habits
Not having enough sleep can trigger bipolar disorder which is why it is important to get as much rest as you can. You need to maintain a balanced sleep habit. Practicing a healthy sleep habit is one of the most effective ways to cope with bipolar disorder.
You can practice healthy sleep habits by minimizing or avoiding afternoon naps, avoiding eating, drinking, or exercising before bed, and ensure to keep your sleep environment as comfortable as possible. Not getting enough sleep could trigger a bipolar episode and alternatively, sleeping more than usual could also be a sign of a bipolar episode so it is better to implement or practice a healthy sleep schedule and make sure to stick with it for effective results.
Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol
Caffeine is a stimulant that keeps the body and minds active when taken. The consumption of caffeine will only lead to staying up all night which can automatically trigger a bipolar episode. Try and cut back on your caffeine intake, especially in the evenings or before bed.
Alcohol disrupts your medications and affects the way they work so it is advisable to avoid both caffeine and alcohol in order to prevent a bipolar episode.
Eat Healthy Foods
Bipolar disorder can affect one’s appetite and disrupt the way one eats. Nevertheless, you must ensure to eat plenty of healthy foods like fruits and vegetables and ensure to cut back on your sugar and fat intake as well as junk foods. Avoid foods that may affect your mood.
There is an undeniable link between the food you consume and your mood so ensure to eat healthy foods that contribute positively to your mood and cut back on your unhealthy foods intake.
Visit a Therapist
Medication is sure one of the ways to cope with bipolar disorder but it is important to understand that you need more than just medications. Therapy is a sure method and way to stabilize your mood and reduce your bipolar episodes. A therapist taps deep into the mind of a person to understand exactly what the person is going through and the possible ways to solve the problem so a therapist is the most appropriate person to provide the right treatment that will work for your condition and needs.
There is no cure for bipolar disorder but there are some ways to cope with this disorder and manage your condition which is by following a treatment plan as directed by a physician and making some lifestyle changes just like the above listed.
Getting through a bipolar disorder can be exhausting and challenging but you need to remember that even though there’s no cure for this mental health condition, there are some ways to cope with it and live a comfortable life.
Do you find this post interesting? Don’t hesitate to share to your contacts, pin/tweet for later or leave a comment below.
Support the blog by sharing and commenting on my posts, subscribing to my newsletter or buy me a coffee. Thanks for your support!