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Bipolar Disorder in Children and Teens - Home Treatment

Learning as much as you can about bipolar disorder may help you recognize mood changes in your child as they begin to occur. Catching and treating these mood changes early may help reduce the length of the manic or depressive episode and improve the quality of your child's life.

There are steps you can take at home to reduce your child's symptoms.

  • Keep your child's room quiet, and have your child go to bed at the same time every night.
  • Control the amount of stress in your child's life. You may need to seek ways to help your child reduce academic requirements during times of severe mania or depression.
  • Learn to recognize the early warning signs of your child's manic and depressive mood episodes.

Steps your child can take to help control moods include:

  • Getting enough exercise. During a depressive episode, your child may feel like doing only gentle exercises, such as taking a walk or swimming.
  • Getting enough sleep and keeping a consistent sleep schedule.
  • Eating a balanced diet.
  • Avoiding the use of alcohol or drugs. Substance abuse makes bipolar disorder worse.
  • Avoiding beverages that contain caffeine, including coffee, tea, colas, and energy drinks.
  • Learning to recognize the early warning signs of manic and depressive mood episodes.
  • Asking for help from friends and family when needed.
actionset.gif Bipolar Disorder in Children: Helping Your Child Prevent Manic Episodes

For some children with bipolar disorder, depression can cause debilitating symptoms. For information about managing childhood depression, see the topic Depression in Children and Teens.

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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: April 10, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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