Mother Theresa spoke both to the humanity and the hope of a situation. So, for all you caregivers out there, this one’s for you: “It’s not how much you do, but how much love you put in the doing.”
A bipolar diagnosis can cast a wide circle—not only to the person diagnosed but also to an entire family or anyone providing love and care.
Families deal with the diagnosis of bipolar in as many different yet profound ways as there are variations of mania and depressive episodes. That’s why it is essential to gain as much knowledge as possible about the complexities that come with symptoms, medication side effects, and choosing the best therapeutic approach—so that life can be managed successfully.
Living with someone with bipolar’s ups and downs was the subject of a study published in the World Journal of Psychology. While the caregiver burden is high, providing care to another is central to the well-being of the person. The research highlighted the need to better understand caregivers’ views and personal perceptions of the stresses and demands in order to develop practical interventions and improve the training of caregivers.
“It is important for caregivers to themselves have a support system: a therapist or network of people who are familiar with the stressors and can help,” says Melvin G. McInnis, MD, FRCPsych.
It can be heartbreaking and frustrating trying to help someone who may, during an episode, seem unreachable. But with enough knowledge and compassion (for yourself, too!), and with the right management wellness plan, recovery is possible. For many, hope and resilience can be key.
In his bestselling memoir (recently rereleased) Hurry Down Sunshine: A Father’s Story of Love and Madness, Michael Greenberg, a New York Times columnist, offers his best advice to caregivers, what he’s learned from raising his daughter, who has bipolar, and what he wishes he knew long ago.
Says Greenberg, “I would tell my younger self that Sally’s psychosis isn’t forever—that with a combination of therapy and medication, she would be able to live a full life with relationships and love.” Read more >>
May 12, 2020, Columbus, OH—Fatty food may feel like a friend, but new research from Ohio State University suggests that eating just one meal high in saturated fat can hinder our ability to concentrate.
Researchers also looked at whether a condition called leaky gut, which allows intestinal bacteria to enter the bloodstream, had any effect on concentration. Participants with leakier guts performed worse on the attention assessment, no matter which meal they had eaten.
“Most prior work looking at the causative effect of the diet has looked over a period of time,” says Annelise Madison, lead author of the study. “And this was just one meal. It’s pretty remarkable that we saw a difference.” Read more >>
Stress is a well-known trigger for bipolar mood episodes and can manifest as emotional, cognitive, behavioral, and physical symptoms. Here’s where you may be going wrong in dealing with stress and stressful situations:
#1 Taking on too much It’s all too easy to say ‘yes’ to things when others ask us to help or be involved with something. Even at work, we sometimes simply take on too much that isn’t good for our physical and mental health. When we have to deal with the added stress of living with bipolar disorder, we have to be careful in what we agree to. Whenever possible, remove yourself from or say no to unimportant projects and situations or events that are known to induce stress. Put yourself first. Read more >>
Whether you live with bipolar or love someone who does, you can find comfort, wisdom, and strategies (maybe even a good laugh!) in these inspirational books. We can lose ourselves in the power of the written word, compelled by the raw emotions, deep insights, and humorous takes offered by others like us—people who share our...
These artists are talking about their experiences with bipolar and music to help raise awareness of mental health. #1 Sia Singer-songwriter Sia Furler is renowned for her eccentric ways of hiding her face (wigs, masks, paint) when performing, but she’s now very public about her diagnosis and has been open about living with bipolar and...
Enhanced primary care helps reduce ER visits October 1, 2020, CHAPEL HILL, NC—Integrating primary care services and behavioral health services appears to reduce emergency room visits among people with severe psychiatric conditions such as bipolar disorder, a new study suggests. American researchers, using the customary term “serious mental illness,” noted that individuals with such conditions...
I’m an expert in bipolar management, yet I still have frequent mood swings and deal with symptoms regularly. Shouldn’t I have “solved” this by now? Shouldn’t I have “recovered”? Bipolar Disorder, Expertise, & Mood Management I’ve been writing books about bipolar disorder management since 1998, and my webpage started in 2002. How is it possible...