Orange County Therapist | Can Bipolar Disorder Be Prevented?

The answer to that somewhat provocative question is No. People with bipolar disorder cycle between two very opposite emotional states. These two states are often called mania and depression. Although it is true that bipolar people can experience more normal emotional states for extended periods of time even when they are not being treated for their condition, bipolar disorder cannot be spoken of as being prevented even if its symptoms are completed controlled.

This mental illness doesn’t discriminate according to age, gender or ethnicity, but its occurrence can be traced among generations of families.

Warning Signs

When we use the word “prevented” in the context of bipolar disorder we can only be discussing the prevention of its symptoms from occurring or escalating in the behavior of individuals. One good way of preventing the symptom of this mental illness from occurring is watching for the warning signs of the disorder. What science has concluded regarding therapeutic efforts for bipolar disorder is that they should for the most part seek to prevent symptoms from recurring after a bipolar episode.

Essentially the symptoms and signs of bipolar disorder are two extremely abnormal mood states.

Symptoms of the abnormal state known as mania include restlessness, excessive energy, recklessness, euphoria, delusion thinking, excessive talking, extreme spending and generosity, drug and alcohol abuse, high-risk sexual encounters, less need for sleep, feelings of immense power, grandiose business schemes and hallucinations.

Symptoms of the abnormal state known depression include a sense of worthlessness and sadness, weeping uncontrollably for little apparent reason, an inability to sleep or take pleasure in anything, excessive sleeping, slow speech, changes in appetite, drug or alcohol abuse, suicidal ideation and inexpiable aches or pain.


Lithium and Lamictal are commonly used to treat bipolar disorder. Both are regarded by psychiatrists as mood stabilizers. Should these medications fail to achieve their intended effects other psychiatric medications such as mood elevators, sedatives and antidepressants may be prescribed for persons with bipolar disorder.
There is a longstanding tradition of using psychotherapy with an Orange County therapist to treat bipolar disorders as well. This type of therapy can help a patient develop and maintain coping mechanisms that will allow them to handle the everyday ups and downs of life. It may also be designed to encourage them to take their medications since extremes of mood can make it hard for a patient to act according to their own best interests in the wake of heightened euphoria or profound depression.

Family counseling can also be important for maintaining a stable psychological environment for the bipolar patient. Bipolar disorder can be particularly hard on family relations.

Group counseling can be of special benefit to bipolar persons who mistakenly believe that they are the only individuals on earth who feel the way that they do.

If they are fortunate enough to receive an appropriate amount of personal, psychological and medicinal care many individuals with bipolar disorder can live happy and productive lives with minimal or absent symptom logy. Treatment of symptoms often involves some trial and error since each case of bipolar disorder is different.

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