Bipolar Disorder

bipolar treatment san francisco oaklandBipolar disorder is a mood disorder that is characterized by fluctuations between periods of depression and periods of manic or hypomanic episodes.  During a depressive episode, you may feel hopeless, fatigued, and empty. Life feels meaningless and daily activities become burdensome. During a manic or hypomanic episode, you experience an increase in energy and motivation. You may have intense feelings of euphoria, passion, and hope, or you may feel quite overwhelmed and irritable.

Bipolar disorder results in drastic shifts in mood, energy, thoughts, bodily sensations, and perceptions. These cycles can last for a period of days, weeks, or months. However, having bipolar disorder is NOT a barrier to living a positive, happy, and balanced life. Many people with this disorder are highly intelligent, intuitive, and successful people. Being diagnosed is not a life sentence. It just means learning how to adjust your lifestyle so that you can reach your full potential.

What are the signs of bipolar disorder?

During a manic episode:

  • Feelings of elation and high energy
  • Irritability
  • Increased impulsivity
  • Paranoia
  • Heightened motivation and hopefulness
  • Increased goal-oriented behavior
  • Feelings of euphoria or grandiosity
  • Increased sense of connection, peace, or spirituality

During a depressive episode:

  • Feelings of hopelessness
  • Exhaustion
  • Inability to experience joy or pleasure
  • Feelings of sadness and despair
  • Feeling that your future is bleak

Between episodes:

  • Constant fear and worry that another episode is on its way
  • Uncertainty about your emotional state
  • Feelings of anticipation or impending doom
  • Mistrust of your own perception of reality

We can help you:

  • Build willingness to cope with the disorder
  • Accept that the disorder is part of your life and that it is not a barrier to living a happy life
  • Cultivate compassion toward yourself
  • Monitor and manage your symptoms
  • Identify the warning signs of a manic or depressive episode
  • Identify adaptive coping strategies
  • Develop daily structure and routine
  • Recognize red flags early on
  • Explore the pros and cons of medication
  • Monitor and track your symptoms
  • Build an action plan for recognizing and managing your symptoms
  • Identify your values and what is important to you
  • Build positive, healthy, and authentic relationships
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