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Bipolar Disorder and Substance Abuse


Bipolar disorder is a mental illness characterized by manic and depressive episodes. By itself, bipolar disorder can cause serious shifts in mood, concentration, or energy.

Bipolar disorder also affects activity levels and the ability to carry out day-to-day tasks. A substance use disorder can either trigger bipolar disorder or make a person’s existing bipolar disorder more unmanageable.

During a depressive episode, those who suffer from bipolar disorder have trouble motivating themselves to perform daily tasks. They also will likely experience extreme fatigue, sadness, poor nutrition, and memory loss.

Similarly, when they are experiencing mania, a state in which they are joyous and anxious, they exhibit poor judgment. These individuals could make decisions without considering the consequences of those choices.

They may act in a way that is abnormally hyperactive. Therefore, bipolar patients experiencing mania might end up in dangerous situations.

Coupling this disorder with the mental, emotional, and physical instability caused by substance abuse creates serious and lasting problems. However, addiction treatment can help those who suffer from both substance use disorder and bipolar disorder.

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61% of those with bipolar disorder 1 also struggle with drug or alcohol addiction as compared to 48% of those with bipolar disorder 2.

Living With Bipolar Disorder and Addiction

Bipolar 1 and bipolar 2 are the two different types of the disorder. Those who experience bipolar 1 have experienced at least one manic episode, while those with bipolar 2 have never experienced a manic episode. In recent studies, it is estimated that 61% of those with bipolar disorder 1 also struggle with substance abuse. Conversely, 48% of those with bipolar disorder 2 also suffer from a substance use disorder.

Living with either bipolar disorder or a substance use disorder separately is hard enough. When you combine the two, it can be one of the most difficult trials an individual can experience. The sheer height of the ups and the depth of the lows is enough to cripple anyone.

Imagine never knowing how you are going to feel from moment to moment. At any second you could spiral into despair strong enough to keep you bedridden for days.

Most of the time, individuals fall into patterns of self-medicating. Undiagnosed bipolar disorder patients are at even higher risk because they might not understand their severe emotional stress. When struggling with both of these, getting help for bipolar and addiction is very important.

Getting Help for Bipolar Disorder and Addiction

Fortunately, help for bipolar and addiction is always available to those who may be in need. As stated, many individuals who have both diseases are involved in self-medicating for bipolar disorder.

Some of the substances they may use for this self-medicating are a mix of uppers and downers. In the morning, they may abuse meth or cocaine. While at night they might abuse heroin or drink themselves to sleep.

Although this situation may seem dire and possibly insurmountable, there are a few good things to take into consideration. First, there are several services facilities that specialize co-occurring disorders. This includes addiction and bipolar disorder.

Second, there are always medications, such as lithium, SSRIs, and antipsychotics that can drastically improve your mood. Likewise, therapy is also available for treatment because it will help get to the bottom of why the individual was consistently abusing in the first place.

Finally, effective addiction treatment centers there is a community of people all working together to achieve the same goals. Thus, providing empathy and understanding to every situation.

No matter how deep into addiction you feel you are, there is always hope for you. Here at ABTRS, we are ready to connect you with a rehab that treats both bipolar disorder and substance abuse disorder.

More on Co-Occuring Disorders

Overcoming Challenges in Recovery

How Bipolar Challenges Addiction Recovery

Even though all of these resources are available, individuals with bipolar and addiction may still struggle. In fact, this trial may be one of the most intense of their lives.

Furthermore, individuals with bipolar disorder and addiction may struggle with relapse more frequently than someone with just addiction. Similarly, someone with addiction may see their moods swing faster and more violently during the detox and recovery process.

Studies show that when someone attends recovery services, the chances of them relapsing after are 40-60%. This number may seem poor, but it is a high likelihood of staying sober in comparison to the alternatives.

These are just a few of the many bumps in the road to full recovery. Notwithstanding, there is a still hope in a rediscovering who you are without addiction to any substance.

With drug and alcohol addiction, failure to stay sober will happen. However, with a recovery service, you will always have support to fall back on. When it comes to getting help with addiction and bipolar, there is no reason to go alone.

Asking for help is sometimes very difficult, but it always need to be done if you desire a full recovery.

Recovery from Addiction and Bipolar

Although bipolar disorder and substance use disorder can heighten each other when people face both at the same time, there is hope. Many people have successfully managed their bipolar disorders and their substance abuse disorders.

When you call us, we can connect you with high-quality treatment that will help you become the best version of yourself. Recovery happens through advanced psychological and medication treatment. Patients can recover with professional help, effort, and a lot of determination.

Mental health professionals can administer different remedies to ensure everyone has relief. There are doctors and clinicians available ready to aid anyone going through a crisis.

Many different types of therapy are available to provide patients with what works for them. Group therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, and pet therapy are all useful when battling these diseases.

When it comes to addiction and bipolar, there is no need to suffer for long periods of time. With every moment you spend avoiding help, the worse the situation will become.

Hope in Recovery

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If you or someone you love is suffering due to an addiction, please call us now. We can connect you with treatment centers that match your needs.

Addiction and bipolar disorder can be treated effectively, but you must reach out. Let us help you or your loved one so they may find healing.

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