PREVIOUS QUESTION:

 

NEXT QUESTION:

 

What should you know about alcohol and bipolar disorder?

ANSWER

Instructions for most psychiatric medications warn users not to drink alcohol, but people with bipolar disorder frequently abuse alcohol and other drugs. The abuse is possibly an attempt to self-medicate or to treat their disturbing mood symptoms, and they may also cause mood symptoms that can mimic those of bipolar disorder. Alcohol is a depressant. That's why many people use it as a tranquilizer at the end of a hard day or as an assist for tense social situations. While some patients stop drinking when they are depressed, it is more common that someone with bipolar disorder drinks during low moods. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, people with bipolar disorder are five times more likely to develop alcohol misuse and dependence than the rest of the population.

SOURCES:

American Psychiatric Association: "Treatment of Patients with Bipolar Disorder."

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: "What You Need to Know About Dietary Supplements."

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: "Depression and Other Illnesses."

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on June 11, 2019

SOURCES:

American Psychiatric Association: "Treatment of Patients with Bipolar Disorder."

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: "What You Need to Know About Dietary Supplements."

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: "Depression and Other Illnesses."

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on June 11, 2019

NEXT QUESTION:

Can I drink grapefruit juice while on bipolar drugs?

WAS THIS ANSWER HELPFUL

THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.