Bipolar Disorder (cont.)

How can I help myself if I have bipolar disorder?

It may be very hard to take that first step to help yourself. It may take time, but you can get better with treatment.

To help yourself:

  • Talk to your doctor about treatment options and progress
  • Keep a regular routine, such as eating meals at the same time every day and going to sleep at the same time every night
  • Try to get enough sleep Stay on your medication
  • Learn about warning signs signaling a shift into depression or mania
  • Expect your symptoms to improve gradually, not immediately.

Where can I go for help?

If you are unsure where to go for help, ask your family doctor. Others who can help are listed below.

  • Mental health specialists, such as psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, or mental health counselors
  • Health maintenance organizations
  • Community mental health centers
  • Hospital psychiatry departments and outpatient clinics
  • Mental health programs at universities or medical schools
  • State hospital outpatient clinics
  • Family services, social agencies, or clergy
  • Peer support groups
  • Private clinics and facilities
  • Employee assistance programs
  • Local medical and/or psychiatric societies.

You can also check the phone book under "mental health," "health," "social services," "hotlines," or "physicians" for phone numbers and addresses. An emergency room doctor can also provide temporary help and can tell you where and how to get further help.

What if I or someone I know is in crisis?

If you are thinking about harming yourself, or know someone who is, tell someone who can help immediately.

  • Call your doctor.
  • Call 911 or go to a hospital emergency room to get immediate help or ask a friend or family member to help you do these things.
  • Call the toll-free, 24-hour hotline of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255); TTY: 1-800-799-4TTY (4889) to talk to a trained counselor.

Make sure you or the suicidal person is not left alone.

For more information on bipolar disorder

National Institute of Mental Health
Science Writing, Press & Dissemination Branch
6001 Executive Boulevard Room 8184, MSC 9663
Bethesda, MD 20892-9663
Phone: 301-443-4513 or
1-866-615-NIMH (6464) toll-free
TTY: 301-443-8431
TTY: 866-415-8051 toll-free
FAX: 301-443-4279
E-mail: nimhinfo@nih.gov
Web site: http://www.nimh.nih.gov

SOURCE:

National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Mental Health


Last Editorial Review: 8/4/2010 7:13:21 PM



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