5 Tips for Living With Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition that causes extreme mood swings. If you have been diagnosed with or show signs of bipolar disorder Insyte Psychiatric of East Brunswick can help you identify your triggers, and manage & control your symptoms.

The following 5 tips are common practices that have helped our patients find success in addition to their regular treatment plan.

  1. Prioritize Sleep

Having a consistent sleep schedule is important for everyone. The recommended amount of sleep for a healthy adult is at least seven hours. Most people don’t need more than eight hours in bed to be well rested. Being consistent by going to bed and waking up at the same time every day reinforces your body’s sleep-wake cycle. A regular sleep schedule is especially important for people with bipolar disorder.

 Poor sleep habits and fatigue can trigger episodes of mania or depression. During a manic period, you can have long periods of insomnia. This insomnia can last for 1 day or a few days. When the mania subsides, your body will feel the effects of lack of sleep.

By keeping a consistent schedule, you can train your body to follow the routine which can help minimize symptoms and maximize the benefits of sleep and recovery.

  1. Take A Break

Following your treatment plan and managing emotions can take a lot of energy. Daily frustrations and anxieties tend to build if there is no relaxing period in between. If you are feeling tired either physically or emotionally, it is important to give yourself a chance to reset and rest from the day’s events.

If you can, take 5-10 minutes for yourself in the morning before work or school. Use this time to prepare for the day by practicing deep breathing or writing in a journal. If a day is particularly stressful, find an appropriate time to take additional breaks throughout the day. By allowing yourself to decompress, you can minimize the effects of stress and anxiety.\

  1. Set Limits

Many people find it difficult to say no. Remember that it is perfectly okay to choose your commitments and activities while considering your mental health. Bipolar disorder or not, it is beneficial to set boundaries with friends, work, and family if you are not in a great mindset. Saying yes to multiple requests can make you feel overstimulated and build a sense of worry and stress. Avoid that situation by being mindful of your time and your health. Prioritizing your treatment plan can allow more freedom in the long run.

  1. Create and Follow A Treatment Plan

Bipolar disorder is a lifelong condition. The goal of treatment is to manage the symptoms and allow you to take back control of your life. In order to achieve that, Dr. Keise may provide a treatment plan that includes medications, talk therapy, and lifestyle change.

Because bipolar disorder is a complex illness, the treatment plan includes a trial-and-error period. While you and Dr. Keises find the treatment plan that works for you, it is important to leave some time to reflect on how the treatment is working for you.

Equally important is maintaining the treatment routine. Extended periods of straying away from the treatment plan can be counterproductive to your symptom management and it can take a while to reestablish your routine.

  1. Schedule Regular Check-Ins

A regular part of every effective treatment plan is regularly meeting with your mental health care provider. As your life fluctuates, a change to your treatment plan may be necessary.  Dr. Keise offers in-person and virtual appointments to discuss those changes and how your treatment plan can adjust to your needs. Following an outdated treatment plan can negatively affect your treatment efforts.