Bipolar Disorder - Other Treatment
Almost all people who have
bipolar disorder need medicine. But counseling is also
important to help you cope with work and relationship struggles related to your
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a type of counseling aimed at teaching you how to become
healthier by modifying certain thought and behavior patterns. It is based on
the theory that thought and behavior can affect a person's symptoms and can slow or prevent recovery.
- Interpersonal therapy focuses on
social and personal relationships and related problems. You and your counselor discuss grief and
loss, role disputes in relationships, and relationship
- Problem solving is a brief, focused form
of cognitive therapy used to treat depression. It focuses on specific problems
and how you can solve them.
- Family therapy is
a type of counseling used to help families deal with a stressful situation or a
life-changing event. In family therapy, each person can express any concerns
and fears about how the problem affects the person who has bipolar disorder and
the family as a whole.
No matter which type of counseling you choose, establish a long-term relationship with a counselor you
like. The counselor will help you recognize personality changes that show when
you are moving into a mood swing. Getting early treatment can reduce the
length of the high or low. See some tips for finding a counselor or therapist.
In some cases,
electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) may be an option. In
this procedure, brief electrical stimulation to the brain is given through
electrodes placed on the head. The stimulation produces a short seizure that is
thought to balance brain chemicals.
A few studies suggest that adding omega-3 fatty acids to medicine (such as lithium) can help reduce the depressive symptoms of bipolar disorder in some people. Omega-3 fatty acids don't seem to have an effect on the manic symptoms of bipolar disorder. And omega-3 fatty acids alone are not a good treatment for bipolar disorder. They are not a replacement for medicine or other therapy used to treat bipolar disorder.6, 7