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Managing Bipolar 1

So managing bipolar has 3 main aspects - medication (psychiatrist), therapy (psychologist) and self management, including the main one being sleep 'hygeine' (google it), monitoring - for me I keep daily charts; self discipline, diversion of energy into things like art, craft, exercise, cooking, gardening - generally things I can do quietly at home but still use my racing brain.  Mindfulness activities are good too.   I find I get overstimulated really easily if I let myself get out in the world too much when manic.  Sounds possibly too restrictive, but it's working at this time.  Otherwise I could be shooting off on all sorts of risky and expensive ventures - have done in the past.

 

 The charts include depression/elevation, sleep, anxiety, irritability, and medications.  So I can see if I start to swing in one direction or another. You can get these charts from psychiatrist or psychologist, on-line or make your own.

 

 

I also use a Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) that's another thing you can google.  It's brilliant and is there as a resource for my support people too if I get too far out of whack.

 

 I'd really welcome contributions to this thread in the hope that we can help each other and also people newly diagnosed.

 

164 REPLIES 164

Re: Managing Bipolar 1

@eth Hi eth great idea for a thread. Even just reading your post I can feel myself , my mind, beginning to race. It is very addictive to have your mind racing and very hard to pull up once a trigger has started. 

 

I have a mental health nurse, a psychologist and a psychiatrist. I am just at the beginning of my journey, The meds are basically right (might need to tweek them here or there). Now I have to work on other things like memories and socializing etc. 

 

I use mindfullness, gentle exercise, no alcohol, regular sleep and of course my friends on Sane to help me through this disorder.

Re: Managing Bipolar 1

 Hi eth great idea for a thread. Even just reading your post I can feel myself , my mind, beginning to race. It is very addictive to have your mind racing and very hard to pull up once a trigger has started. 

 

I have a mental health nurse, a psychologist and a psychiatrist. I am just at the beginning of my journey, The meds are basically right (might need to tweek them here or there). Now I have to work on other things like memories and socializing etc. 

 

I use mindfullness, gentle exercise, no alcohol, regular sleep and of course my friends on Sane to help me through this disorder.

Re: Managing Bipolar 1

@Dadcaringalone this thread totally welcomes both those with and those caring for people with Bipolar, and also those undiagnosed who think they might have it.

 Helping people managing highs and lows is my goal with this thread.  Feel free to share whatever you want to that relates to all forms of bipolar.  I just said bipolar 1 because a) it's what I have and b) it has the most extreme highs and lows and includes psychosis as well as full-blown mania. 

Hoping we can share our journeys and keep adding to the 'tool box' of managing methods.

But absolutely a safe place for people who are in any phase of the bipolar spectrum of moods to come and hopefully find some little thing that might help come back to the centre of the wavelength.

Also a safe place to talk about how other diagnoses (e.g. complex PTSD) can interact with and trigger bipolar swings. 

Re: Managing Bipolar 1

Thanks for sharing here @greenpea.  I think you manage incredibly well considering you have the added job of caring for others.

Re: Managing Bipolar 1

@eth@greenpeaWould like to add that it’s important for those who are becoming manic that there are those around them who recognize the signs. Having a loved one there I think it’s as important as medication as they are able to intervene and help manage the highs and lows. While the highs are quite addictive and enjoyable for my son with the uncontrolled spending etc, the lows with uncontrollable anger, with no trigger at all also warrant special attention. I find this particularly difficult to handle when there is a lot of anger, uncomfortable screaming and anger in a public places without any concerns for the on-lookers. It tests my meditation skills to the extremes and I feel it’s very important that whoever is involved does not scream or getting involved because it can escalate and often result in a terrible  consequence for all those involved. That’s all for now, gotta run. Excellent effort @eth

Former-Member
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Re: Managing Bipolar 1

Really interesting mental health orientated topic that I have found informative and helpful. So refreshing to read a topic based around mental health and a discussion on it that others can truly relate to, encouraged to join into and gain support from. Thanks for starting it

Re: Managing Bipolar 1

Well said @Dadcaringalone  I used to have uncontrolled rages too.  Haven't had one since around 2009 but the last one was an absolute doozy.  Outside at night screaming abuse and naming people in the neighbourhood, who could hear me.  Not long after that the police picked me up forcefully and took me 100km to the forensic psych ward at the hospital.  Kept in for a week but at last I was diagnosed and medicated correctly.  Another aspect of BP that I have to control actively.  Last year I got (justifiably) angry at my Mum, managed not to act it out, but was still hypomanic for the next 3 months.  I now know she can be a trigger for me and work at having boundaries in my relationship with her.

I know there are others here who also have to work at anger management.  Hopefully you'll get some more feedback from them too.

Re: Managing Bipolar 1

@Dadcaringalone I agree with everything that you have said. The meltdowns are often in public places with no consideration of the consequences  Help from loved ones in recognizing what is happening is essential and keeping calm but acknowledging something is wrong  I believe is a good way in helping. Unfortunately for me no one told me I was sick so I fell further and further down the rabbit hole.

Re: Managing Bipolar 1

Helping people managing highs and lows is my goal with this thread. -- waht a great idea @eth

Hello @greenpea, @Former-Member, @Dadcaringalone

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