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The treatment of bipolar disorder


Bipolar disorder is a disabling and life-threatening illness.

The treatment goals for bipolar disorder should be to:

  • stabilise mood
  • eliminate symptoms
  • prevent relapse
  • reduce co-morbidity
  • prevent mortality
  • provide well-tolerated treatments

It’s easier said than done.

The Discussion

see what everyone is saying

  • Stephen Fryberger December 30th, 2012 at 5:46 pm #1

    So often forgotten:-

    “Life threatening” and

    “mortality”

  • BOP December 31st, 2012 at 1:28 pm #2

    Yes, bipolar is a life-threatening illness. People die from suicide just as they die from heart attacks and strokes.

  • David January 6th, 2013 at 3:21 pm #3

    Bi-polar in my case was hereditory as my family has a broad history of various mental illness, I have attempted suicide many times over the years once by shooting and others by various methods. Each time I was found and saved, honestly I have never been sure that I was happy about this as my first oppinion was that this is so unfair just try to understand and let me go.
    My first son Cameron was born with and extremally rare form of disability, Lebers congenital amourosis type one respiratory chain complex A. He could not walk, talk, eat, drink, sit or go to the toilet. He was blind, deaf he had epilepsy, one kidney and only one testicle (which was the least of his worries). I spent many years caring for him with my partner whilst trying to maintain a career as an Aircraft Maintenance Engineer. The support we received from the government was dismal, the carers that came into our house were largely un-professional (the good ones will know who you are as you work with passion and interest). We had one carer tip Cameron from his wheel chair onto his face in the gutter whilst planning his upcoming weekend on his mobile phone leaving Cameron with all his front teeth knocked out, another rolled him down our steep driveway and lost control of his chair whilst lighting a cigarette leaving him again hospitalised. On both occasions there were no ramifications for either carer, the care agency defending their own reputation over disiplinary action. All these care agencies were provided by Disability Services Queensland.
    This agency refused to provide or even assist with a wheelchair accessible vehicle and preferred to waste the equivilant of two wheelchair vans every year in taxi fees. When it came to his needs for wheelchairs they would immediately gravitate towards the cheapest available which we immediately palmed in favour of a quality german wheelchair with gel seating, after all this young boy spent all his time out of bed in that chair and we wanted the best for him. DSQ would only provide a small portion the rest funded by other groups that ironically would take ownership of the chair based on them providing only 25% of the funding.
    We had one carer that would come to work with flu (having respiritory chain complex A meant Cameron could die when exposed to simple flu) I politely asked her to please wear a medical mask which she did though when her shift was over and she left went and reported us to Child Safety Queensland just out of spite, it went nowhere though the record never goes away.
    Whenever you demanded the best you got people off side so you never knew what was going to happen next.
    Anyway, after seven years of hard work, sweat and tears we ran out of funding for the umteenth time, my partner couldn’t cope and I was forced to leave my career and come home and help. This was the beginning of the end as everything went downhill for us from here on in. Cameron contracted swine flu and pneumonia a year later and passed away in 2008 on his fourteenth birthday, its effects devastated me and accelerated the full and complete onset of bipolar; I have never recovered, never been myself since that day. We worked so hard to just be cast aside with the complete and total loss of everything, financial, life and career. My life is ok, though I cannot stop running; I must push myself at all times with no break, no respite I can never stop until the day I die.
    I keep optimistic that I will one day be famous or at least be in a position to help others in similar positions, My life is very different from most and I am proud to still be standing although sometimes I don’t know for how long, I always seem to come back from the brink. I have no career and wonder always what the future will bring for me, I harbour no resentment to anyone and do not blame my parents for anything, as I was meant to experience this for some reason that will come clear to me in the future as nothing occurs in life by accident.
    I have broken my back twice already actually through a car accident and not paragliding ironically, Peace seems to be something that I yearn for, I seek it everyday. I am genuinely trying to start base jumping/ proximity flying as I will find peace there; this I know for certain, it is like a calling that you cannot ignore. When your emotions, mind or body is damaged you must apply yourself where only you can, everything will be fine and trust that you have been there before, because you have. The pain I feel inside is far worse than any pain I could feel anywhere in any sport, this is why I must go to where I will find my own kind. Those that also seek peace, in a world where there is no past, no future only now.
    I raise my children behind a veil to an extent, I teach them all I know of the world; I teach them kindness and goodness, to think of others and be aware that the only pressure they should feel in their own lives is that of their own desires. Be good to all living creatures in spite of how you may ever be treated yourself, but don’t be abused in any way. My intention is not to be morbid with this post, actually the opposite. No matter how bad things feel, as long as you have your dreams there will always be hope. To everybody that has challenges may you always stand tall and proud of who you are no matter what, you are blessed and you are special in the eyes of the universe.

  • BOP January 6th, 2013 at 11:13 pm #4

    Hi David, being able to tell your story is so important. Your post is very moving.

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