Also called manic-depressive disorder, bipolar is characterized by extreme mood swings. Women experiencing this may feel like they are on a constant roller coaster. The manic phase of bipolar disorder is the “up” side and the depressive phase is the “down” side of these severe mood swings. Swings from high to low may occur in rapid cycles, even within the same day, or each phase may last for weeks or months. This instability of mood can be devastating for women and their families.
A woman may feel on top of the world or out-of-control during the high-energy manic phase and then will swing into an extreme state of depression. Often, frustration with such out-of-control feelings leads to episodes of rage or aggressive outbursts.
Treatment for bipolar disorder can be complicated because of resistance to staying on medications. A woman with bipolar disorder may have difficulty finding an experienced bipolar therapist who is able to address life circumstances, medical history, the severity of symptoms and the disorder’s impact on daily life. Medication management differs from that of depression because some anti-depressant medications can trigger a manic episode rather than stabilize mood. Social support is so valuable to a woman experiencing bipolar disorder yet so often her extreme mood swings cause alienation and shame.
Brookhaven Retreat psychiatrists and therapists work together to assess depressive and manic symptoms to provide bipolar disorder treatment in a compassionate and non-judging environment. If you think you or someone you care about is having trouble with mood swings, we can help you determine the best route to get bipolar treatment.