Bipolar Disorder Treatment
How Does PCH Diagnosis Bipolar Disorder?
Before we dive into the strategies we employ to treat bipolar at PCH, we first need to explain our stance on what a bipolar diagnosis means. In our experience, the label “bipolar” is often prone to misdiagnosis. We recognize that it’s virtually impossible to avoid the term “bipolar” altogether. Instead of doing away with the label, our mission is to ensure the diagnosis is used and applied correctly.
While Bipolar I often comes with the classic, telltale symptoms, including periods of mania that may require hospitalization, a Bipolar II diagnosis can be a little more nuanced and is more challenging to identify. We’ve found that emotional dysregulation, anxiety, and symptoms from trauma can all be inaccurately diagnosed as Bipolar II.
When you come to PCH, we first focus on what’s happened to you instead of what you may have been diagnosed with in the past. While we may use a past diagnosis to inform how we move forward, we first determine whether that diagnosis is accurate, while avoiding the stigmata and stereotypes that come with labeling. From there, our experts apply a wide range of bipolar treatment options to help you achieve mental balance.
Mood stabilizers almost always play a vital role in moving forward with a bipolar diagnosis. However, those mood stabilizers do not work if you have been misdiagnosed as bipolar. That’s why medication management is an essential aspect of treating a bipolar diagnosis or misdiagnosis. After we’ve determined the accuracy (or inaccuracy) of your diagnosis, our team focuses on managing the medication you’re taking.
Our specialists pay attention to the effects and benefits of the medication you’re currently prescribed while assessing if other medicines or doses may be a better fit. Once we’ve found the right balance of medication, we educate you on the importance of continuing to take that medication. Too often, we’ve seen recovering clients stop taking medication as soon as symptoms dissipate, which can trigger a manic state.
Neurofeedback provides insights into your underlying thought patterns while retraining your brain to become more balanced, alert, and calm. With a bipolar diagnosis, specific thought patterns can trigger a manic state, so we measure brain waves in a way that rewards positive thoughts while discouraging negative thought patterns. In conjunction with mindfulness exercises such as yoga, meditation, and art, neurofeedback can help you on the path to managing symptoms.
Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)
Stress and trauma can trigger a manic state. To reduce the chances of that happening to you, PCH employs MBSR to help you identify those triggers and channel stress into a productive outlet. You learn how to cope more effectively with short- and long-term stressful situations by tuning into physical sensations, perceptions, and thought patterns.
Bipolar Group and Family Therapy
At PCH, we understand if you feel like you can’t do it all on your own, and we want you to know that you never have to. Bipolar groups and family therapy are core components of responding to a bipolar diagnosis. We offer dedicated bipolar groups that provide you with real-world coping strategies, while partnering you with a support group whose collective goal is preventing manic and depressive states. Our specialists also work with families to help them understand what a bipolar diagnosis means and how they can support their loved ones on the path to mental balance.
When you’re faced with a bipolar diagnosis, factoring in sleep is critical to achieving a more balanced life. Bipolar disorder is often characterized by sleep-related issues such as insomnia, hypersomnia, and an irregular sleep schedule. The specialists at PCH work with you to identify a baseline sleep routine while mitigating sleep disturbances.
Schedule a Tour of PCH Treatment Center
Whether you’re struggling to come to terms with a bipolar diagnosis or you’re questioning whether your diagnosis is accurate, our team is here to help. When you’re ready to take the next step to a more balanced life, schedule a complimentary consultation with our team of specialists. We offer inpatient and outpatient bipolar programs to accommodate your personal struggles and goals.