I’ve touched on it before – that I’m super passionate about mental health. I love learning and knowing different disorders and how it effects an individual. Today I wanted to touch on Bipolar Disorder and some coping with manic episodes.
A lot of the key things involve prevention, but just like any other illness, episodes are not always preventable no matter how hard you work and how healthy you are. So what do you do when you feel that energy and panic rushing in?
- Stop. Realize this is an episode and not you. It can feel like you’re losing it, but you are not you are totally ok. Deep breathes.
- Reach out. Let your support team know what’s going on. Whether this be your doctor, your family, your friends, whoever is your support – reach out to them.
- Assess. Is this manageable? If you can bring yourself down and ride it out then just hold on, if it is worse then let someone know you need more help
Then the coping begins:
- Bubble bath. This instantly brings peace, light a candle or some aroma, make huge bubbles and keep it warm but not too hot. Bring a water bottle beside you too because hydration is huge.
- Water. Drink it. The best thing you can do is be good to your body while you’re riding out a high.
- Meditation. Ok yes it will be extremely difficult but even 3 minutes of zen will help calm the onset.
- Yoga or walking. Really any form of low impact exercise. It helps to sweat it out, but you don’t want to work yourself up.
- Writing. Write it out. When mania or hypomania hits it can feel like a wall of a million thoughts hit you at once. Start to write it out, it will not only slow you down but allow for some room to form in your head.
- To-do lists. You may feel like doing everything NOW but you are not your most productive or focused. So keep a list of stuff you feeling like you NEED to do and re-assess it at a later point.
- Avoid caffeine and simple sugars/carbs. Chamomile tea is amazing. And avoiding the sugars and simple carbs will help your body not to spike in blood sugar making you feel sicker. A great mindless munch for a sweet tooth is almonds. (Maybe some chocolate or yogurt covered too).
- Ride it out. If you have been diagnosed for awhile you know this feeling. You know it will pass and its a big wave right now but you can do this, ride it.
In the end, help yourself, and reach out for help from a support group.