How to Deal With a Loved One With Bipolar Disorder
Approximately 5.5 million Americans aged 18 or older, or 2.6 percent of the adult population, are reported to be suffering from bipolar disorder (BPD). It is a neurobiological brain disorder and the person suffering from it experiences mood swings ranging from periods of severe highs (mania) to extreme lows (depression).
So, you can imagine that life with bipolar disorder isn’t easy and when you have someone in the family with the disease, your whole environment will need a revamp to accommodate the patient. Your love and support to the family member will make a huge difference in the treatment and recovery. Apart from taking care of the patient, you will need to take care of yourself so that a balance is maintained at all times and the situation does not go out of control.
So how do you deal with a situation when a loved one in the family is afflicted with bipolar disorder? Here, we take a look at how we can help a loved one with bipolar disease:
Gather maximum information about bipolar disorder
It has been observed that generally a person with bipolar disorder consults three to four doctors and spends more than eight years seeking treatment before receiving a correct diagnosis. This period is a complete waste of valuable time and the patient has to endure unnecessary hardships which could have been avoided at best. Hence, it is utmost important for you to know everything about bipolar if a loved one in the family shows symptoms of the disorder. Collating as much information about the disease is the first step towards helping your loved one in coping with it. Without correct information you will take a long time to identify the symptoms of bipolar and it will only delay the process of starting the treatment.
Once you acquire the requisite knowledge, you will get the right perspective and start addressing the issue in the proper direction. There are several premier institutions in the country that have been successfully treating bipolar disorder. Bipolar treatment in California in particular is quite easy with adequate centers curing patients suffering from the disease.
Encourage your loved one to get help
Convince the person to get help and start treatment. Studies have revealed that earlier treatment results in better prognosis and faster healing of patients. There are many residential centers in the country, for example, the BPD residential treatment centers in Los Angeles, which have proven credentials in treating such patients who are now leading healthy lives.
Be sympathetic and understanding
Lend an ear to your loved one and make him or her feel that you will be there throughout and help in every possible way. A person with bipolar disorder is not very comfortable in leaning on another person and shies away from confiding in others. So, be proactive in helping and showing empathy towards the person. This will encourage better cooperation from the person. Take the person to a treatment facility in the vicinity and initiate discussion with doctors. If you are in California, then the BPD treatment facilities in California are among the crème of the crop centers specializing in bipolar disorder.
Dealing with bipolar is a life-long process, so do not expect a miracle overnight. Execute the process with patience because getting better needs time despite being committed to it. Also, be prepared for contingencies and setbacks, as these are a part and parcel of the healing process in bipolar disorder. The more you appear calm and unfazed with setbacks, the more positive a signal it will send across to the patient. So, always hold your nerve at all times.
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