You can recover from alcoholism and use ongoing medications, therapy, and other healthy coping strategies to manage bipolar disorder. Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance abuse, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery. The symptoms of bipolar disorder can be intense, and for some people they might also be difficult to deal with. While many find symptom relief with psychiatric care, others may turn to alcohol to self-medicate and cope with the symptoms. For example, people may drink to temporarily boost their mood while in a depressive episode or they might feel uncomfortable with the agitation that comes with a manic episode and drink some liquor to feel calmer. In general, sources report that about 50 percent of individuals who receive a diagnosis of bipolar disorder will also qualify for a diagnosis of alcohol use disorder.
Symptoms of bipolar disorder, such as manic moods or depression, may be triggered by chronic alcohol abuse or withdrawal. Consider for a second why you are even asking this question about alcohol in the first place. Perhaps it is because alcohol has become a means of coping when your symptoms are difficult. It can take the edge off of depression, anxiety, and racing thoughts. As long you use alcohol to manage your mental health, you won’t take the time to find healthy means of coping. It’s hard to do the work of getting better if you don’t even know how you actually feel. Still, alcoholic patients going through alcohol withdrawal may appear to have depression.
Bipolar Disorder And Alcohol Abuse
Your chances of relapse are high unless you undergo comprehensive treatment for both conditions. For those with bipolar disorder, relapse prevention techniques must provide coping skills for dealing with social and emotional causes for drug abuse. Bipolar disorder, as well as substance abuse, causes serious risks to an individual’s health. Compared to the general population, people battling with the disorder are more likely to have relationship problems, financial Instability, suicides, and accidents. They are likely to be addicted to drugs alcohol, assuming they do not already battle with addiction. If someone dear to you is battling co-occurring alcohol use disorder and bipolar disorder, we encourage you to contact us.
Jeffrey’s mission is to educate and inform the public on addiction issues and help those in need of treatment find the best option for them. If alcohol is not merely a social part of your life, you’ll need more than will power to eliminate it for good. Ask your doctor for help, seek counseling, and find an AA meeting to attend. The nature of each meeting varies, so you may need to keep checking them out until you find one in which you feel most comfortable. Unfortunately, not everyone is able to recognize when their drinking reaches the danger zone.
Our free, confidential telephone consultation will help you find the best treatment program for you. We can also guide you in approaching a loved one who needs treatment. There are numerous presentations that can occur in bipolar disorder. Your teenage and adult life has felt like a season of Game of Thrones; your weeks are full of extreme ups and downs with very little calm in between. Some days, you’re completely wired and feeling on top of the world. You constantly need to be doing something to release the excess energy you have, so you engage in reckless and impulsive behaviors. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Dialectical Behavior Therapy have also been shown to be successful in educating Dual Diagnosis individuals on how to regulate their feelings and avoid being distressed by mood swings.
Alcohol use disorder represents a frequent comorbidity in patients with bipolar disorder , with a prevalence rate of 30%–35%. Alcohol misuse negatively affects long-term mood stability, influencing several neurotransmitter functions and disrupting sleep architecture. Alcohol may also aggravate bipolar disorder neuro-progression via oxidative stress. Allostatic changes in the brain reward system may render BD patients more vulnerable to drug addiction. Patients with AUD-BD comorbidity show earlier onset, a more severe course of illness, higher impulsivity levels, worse treatment response, and increased suicide risk compared to patients with BD alone.
The Link Between Bipolar Disorder And Alcohol
This may cause alcohol misuse and bipolar disorder each to trigger symptoms of the other condition. Develop coping strategies for overcoming stress and leading a healthier lifestyle.
But then, this manic high is replaced with soul-crushing depression. In an attempt to make yourself feel better, you again indulge in impulsive behaviors. Jeffrey Juergens earned his Bachelor’s and Juris Doctor from the University of Florida. Jeffrey’s desire to help others led him to focus on economic and social development and policy making. After graduation, he decided to pursue his passion of writing and editing.
By examining the thoughts and feelings that lead to manic and depressive behaviors, addicted people with bipolar disorder can better understand their actions. This helps them prepare for cravings and episodes, so they can manage their behavior. Treating co-occurring disorders involves tackling both problems at once. A person struggling with an addiction and bipolar disorder can get treatment through an inpatient or outpatient rehab. Treatment for bipolar disorder is insufficient without treating drug misuse, and vice versa.
Treating Bipolar Disorder And Alcohol Abuse
Thirty-five percent spent an average of 10 years between the onset of their illness and diagnosis and treatment. Researchers propose reasons for the strong relationship between alcoholism and bipolar disorder. One explanation is that certain psychiatric disorders may be risk factors for substance use. On the other hand, symptoms of bipolar disorder may appear during chronic alcohol intoxication or withdrawal. The symptoms of bipolar disorder often resemble the signs of drug use and addiction.
But perhaps more importantly, “This comorbidity also has implications for diagnosis and treatment. Alcohol use may worsen the clinical course of bipolar disorder, making it harder to treat. There has been little research on the appropriate treatment for comorbid patients.
Some medications used to treat bipolar disorder, such as lithium, can have a negative interaction with alcohol. This allows medical providers to manage care during withdrawal, evaluate bipolar symptoms, and begin treatment. People often use depressants to alleviate symptoms during a manic episode. People often use stimulants in hopes of recovering from depression. However, stimulants can trigger manic episodes and worsen symptoms. Both attempts to self-medicate and relieve symptoms end up making the problems much worse.
However, all of these other presentations must include either mania or hypomania. Bipolar disorder and related conditions were seen as a sort of middle ground between depression and psychosis as opposed to being a mood disorder. Research published in the Journal of Affective Disorders concluded that alcohol abuse was the single most prevalent substance use disorder in people with bipolar I and bipolar II disorders. Bipolar disorder and substance use disorders often go hand in hand. According to a 2014 survey from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration , substance use disorders occur more frequently in people with mental health disorders than the general population.
Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. In the event of a medical emergency, call a doctor or 911 immediately. This website does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, physicians, products, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned on the Site. Reliance on any information provided by this website is solely at your own risk.
- Individuals diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder often have abnormal levels of serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine compared with the brains of healthy people.
- People who misuse alcohol are more likely to have bipolar disorder.
- Thus, valproate appears to be a safe and effective medication for alcoholic bipolar patients.
- While doctors do not clearly understand the connection between bipolar disorder and alcohol use disorder, various factors can play a role.
Agape Treatment Center for substance abuse embraces a universal, unconditional love that transcends, that serves regardless of circumstances. We provide individuals all over the country with the opportunity to achieve the gift of lasting sobriety. Unspecified and specified related disorders—the symptoms may stem from drug or alcohol use or other medical conditions.
First, patients were recruited during a manic episode, which is an atypical presentation of alcoholism.21 Second, inclusion criteria required manic symptoms to persist beyond the period of acute intoxication and withdrawal. Third, these patients exhibited a pattern of affective relapses virtually identical to those of the other 2 bipolar groups, in the absence of a meaningful correlation between alcohol-use disorder and affective symptoms. Therefore, although the course of bipolar illness was less severe in the Alcohol First group, qualitatively it was otherwise quite similar to the course of illness in the other groups. Nonetheless, the relatively delayed onset of bipolar symptoms in this patient group suggests that aggressive management of alcohol abuse in people at risk for bipolar disorder warrants further investigation. It’s simply not enough to treat bipolar disorder without addressing the problem of alcohol addiction, and vice versa. Until you receive comprehensive care for both conditions, the chances of relapse are extremely high. At Unity Behavioral Health, we are highly skilled and experienced at treating the dual diagnosis of bipolar disorder and alcoholism.
Drinking can exacerbate the symptoms of bipolar disorder because alcohol negatively affects mental and physical health in the long and short term. It is important that someone who is struggling with alcohol and bipolar disorders gets help from a dual diagnosis treatment program equipped to help manage and treat both conditions. Treating co-occurring disorders can minimize the risk of blackouts and give the patient their best chance at leading a happy, productive life.