Bipolar and Stress

Articles and blog posts relating to stress and living with bipolar disorder.

Blogs and Articles

How Animals Help Brain Chemistry

bp Magazine
July 10, 2017

Our relationship to animals has a profound effect on the biochemistry of our brains; here’s how: An oxytocin boost There are documented physiological changes in people who spend as little as 15 minutes with a dog or cat or participate in equine therapy—Their oxytocin levels increase. Dubbed the “love” or “hug” hormone, oxytocin creates a...

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How Animals Affect Our Hormones

bp Magazine
July 10, 2017

From the “love hormone” to the “runner’s high” pets affect our biology. The bonding effect Researchers have shown that if your dog gazes into your eyes for long enough, your oxytocin level will increase. The neuropeptide oxytocin is commonly referred to as the “love hormone.” Other names include the “hug hormone” or the “cuddle hormone.”...

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How Dogs Can Help Symptoms of PTSD

bp Magazine
July 9, 2017

Dogs can have a real impact on the treatment and recovery from post traumatic stress disorder; here are just some of the ways: Dogs can alert owners to stress. Psychiatric service dogs can be trained for a variety of brain-based disorders including depression, anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder, PTSD and autism. Some animals can also alert...

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7 Ways To Manage Stress While Also Managing Bipolar

bp Magazine
April 22, 2017

Stress can hit harder when you also deal with bipolar disorder; here are seven ways to cope: #1 Do something relaxing Take a luxurious and long bath; or, get lost in an activity that is mindless i.e. coloring, listening to soothing music, or watching a comedy special. The point is to do something that is...

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Picture of woman meditating and refusing multitasking assignments

The Drawbacks Of Multitasking: 3 Simple Ways To Stop

April Michael
March 21, 2017

The world demands we multitask, but the added frustration and stress can cause some bipolar disorder symptoms to rear their ugly heads. In the early part of the millennium, multitasking was all the rage. It practically became a badge of honor to tell people how well you could multitask. “I can cook dinner while talking...

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Getting A Handle On Bipolar’s Irritability & Anger

Andrea Paquette
February 24, 2017

Avoiding caffeine, dodging lines and remembering to take breaks when working are small ways you can manage bipolar disorder irritability before it grabs a hold of you. Irritability is an ongoing issue that I experience. There are times when I feel extremely on edge and it seems that nothing is going right in my day....

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10 Ways to Clear the Clutter and Scrap the Bipolar Stress

bp Magazine
February 5, 2017

Too much mess, too much stress? Indeed! Research has linked disorganized spaces with stress, anxiety, and depression. But clearing the clutter is no easy task. Add bipolar to the mix, and you might risk emotional overload. Here are 10 steps to simplify the process of reclaiming your space—and your peace of mind. #1 Be intentional...

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Emotional Eating: Food vs. Feelings

Kelly James-Enger
November 9, 2016

Eating to soothe emotions doesn’t help in the long run. Try these strategies! By Kelly James-Enger   Wayne, of Wisconsin learned to “eat his feelings” at an early age. “I was always the bullied kid on the playground, and it seemed like I was two paces behind everyone else,” Wayne recalls. “We had a local...

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What To Do When Stability Is In Jeopardy

Brad Hoefs
November 6, 2016

If you’re feeling emotionally unwell, take time to find the root cause––and get your journey towards stability back on track. In the last 14 years, I have had no major mood swings, episodes nor interruptions to my life due to having bipolar disorder. Yes, I do have bipolar disorder. Four of us in my family...

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politics stress bipolar disorder anxiety depression

3 Strategies for Coping with Bipolar & Politics

​Jess Melancholia
October 20, 2016

Politics like the weather — and bipolar — just doesn’t go away. Feeling anxious and overwhelmed with politics, debates and the continual media coverage?  Here’s what you can do to avoid being triggered. It goes without saying that bipolar does the same thing as politics. It’s there in your life whether or not you like...

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Ask the Doctor: Holiday Stress Strategies

Melvin G. McInnis, MD, FRCPsych
October 4, 2016

Enjoy the gift of peace and health through careful planning ahead, avoiding triggers, and monitoring your mood before, during, and after this year’s holiday season.   With the holidays approaching, there is a childlike anticipation of good times: the parties, the jingle in the malls, the shopping, the food, and—my favorite—snow. But challenges abound. Routines...

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Heart with bandages on it stock image

It’s Okay to Not Be Okay: The Trouble With Too Much Optimism

April Michael
September 27, 2016

Although reframing negative self-talk is a valuable tool, it can take away from you fully experiencing––and validating––difficult thoughts. As I write this, I am thirty seven weeks pregnant. The levels of stress, excitement, and anxiety in my home are palpable. The stress of welcoming a new baby however can often be classified as eustress, or...

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Happy woman smiles on couch while at peace

Accepting Unexpected, Unannounced Bipolar Mood Swings

Beth Brownsberger Mader
September 17, 2016

To experience my bipolar as an illness entirely separate from everything else in my life, as an entity of its own, is, in a way, a blessing. One might think that twelve years’ post-diagnosis, nine years as a writer on mental health issues, three years as a peer supporter, and a consistent follower of my own...

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Mindful Multitasking: 3 Quick Steps to De-Stress

Robin L. Flanigan
June 20, 2016

In the modern world, where multitasking is expected of us, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. So whenever you do, remember these three tips: William Marchand, MD , an associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Utah, stresses the value of mindfulness interventions in his book Depression and Bipolar Disorder: Your Guide to Recovery. His...

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Stress Affects Males and Females Differently

bp Magazine
May 26, 2016

Male and female bodies appear to respond differently to stress on a metabolic level. The differences relate to cellular activity governed by the hypothalamus.   May 26, 2016—How does stress – which, among other things, causes our bodies to divert resources from non-essential functions – affect the basic exchange of materials that underlies our everyday...

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Old-fashioned pocket compass

5 Keys to Successfully Navigating Change

Brad Hoefs
January 31, 2016

Life is full of change––some that we like, and others that we don’t––that can trigger bipolar disorder. Here are tips to help you successfully manage change As they say, “The only thing that never changes is change.” Life is full of changes. Some changes that we make, others make, or life makes for us. Some...

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A man at work closes his eyes and touches his thumbs to his index fingers, with palms up. He finds a moment of Zen amidst a stressful moment with bipolar.

7 Tips for Coping with Stressful Events When Living with Bipolar Disorder

Melanie McKinnon
January 14, 2016

How to stabilize yourself & manage your bipolar disorder when life presents you with the unexpected. With my recent bipolar I diagnosis, I know that I have to avoid stress as much as possible. But what happens when the stress comes to me? The Stress of the Unexpected Recently, my husband severely injured his right...

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The Fast-Acting Benefits Of Slowing Down

Beth Brownsberger Mader
March 20, 2015

I’ve come to believe that reducing stress, moving more slowly, and living a spiritually connected existence is a way for all of us to better manage not just shifting moods but also the increasingly lofty demands of 21st century living. For fast acting relief, try slowing down.—Lily Tomlin I’ve had low blood pressure and a...

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How My Dog’s Emotional Support Changed My Life

Andrea Paquette
March 6, 2015

Refresh yourself by bonding with a pet dog or cat when you find your concern for others has begun to severely outweigh the care you have for your own mental health.   I am assured that the worst of my bipolar disorder episodes are behind me, as I have consistently held down a full-time job...

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7 Tips For Surviving Holiday Stress

Russ Small
December 19, 2014

The holiday season is a period of festivities, joy and light—or maybe not so much. The very things that define the holidays, can also be the things that make us feel stressed, depressed and anxious. Every year the holiday season swings around again, a festive period of joy and light—or maybe not so much. The...

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