What Are the Treatment Options for Bipolar Disorder?


Quick Answer

Depending on a patient's personal needs, treatment options for bipolar disorder could include medicines to help stabilize the patient's mood, such as valproic acid, according to Mayo Clinic. Another common treatment option is psychotherapy.

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What Are the Treatment Options for Bipolar Disorder?
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Full Answer

Treatment for bipolar disorder begins with an initial treatment of medicines used to get the patient's mood under control, states Mayo Clinic. Commonly used drugs include antidepressants, antipsychotics or a combination of both. After the patient's initial symptoms are under control, the doctor usually tries to find a treatment option that works in the long-term.

Many doctors find that using psychotherapy along with medicine can help, states Mayo Clinic. One commonly used psychotherapy is cognitive-behavioral therapy, which aims to replace negative beliefs and behaviors with more positive ones. Another commonly used therapy is interpersonal and social-rhythm therapy, which aims to balance and improve a patient's mood by stabilizing her daily rhythm with routines. These routines could involve activities such as sleep and meal time.

In some cases, a treatment called transcranial magnetic stimulation may be used. This therapy uses brief magnetic pulses to stimulate the parts of the brain responsible for mood regulation and depression. This type of therapy is usually used when a patient is not responding well to prescribed antidepressants, according to Mayo Clinic.

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