What is Bipolar / Manic Depression ?

“Giving someone a Psychiatric diagnosis is an immensely powerful act which has profound implications for their identity, relationships place in the community, employment, health and future” Lucy Johnstone, clinical Psychologist

Bipolar / Manic Depression can involve extremes of high and low mood, including depression and periods of elation, over activity and irritability (mania). A person’s sleep can be affected, sleeping more when depressed or not feeling the need for much sleep when in mania or hypomania (the word used to describe a milder version of mania). They can lose the concept of money and spending. As well as lose the sense of time. Some people also experience psychosis (a temporary loss of touch with so called reality).

Depression and Manic Depression can be caused by a number of things including poor nutrition, unresolved trauma from childhood, poverty, unemployment, work related stress, lifestyle choices, life circumstances and thought processes.

Manic Depression can impact a person’s life in several ways, so it is important when the symptoms first develop that the person gets the empathy and understanding they need, as well as the most accurate and honest information available. How the first episode is dealt with can have a big impact on the speed of recovery and potential future episodes.

What causes Manic Depression / Bipolar ?

When it comes to Manic Depression, no true biomarkers have been found and no genetic abnormalities have been reliably identified. “A biological marker is an identifiable biological abnormality that consistently and reliably demonstrates the presence of a particular disease … The lack of any investigative tests relative to the diagnosis and management of Psychiatric disorders is striking” Dr Terry Lynch [1].

We are told that Manic Depression is a “disease” yet there is no evidence there to back this up. The drugs used to treat mania / psychosis are basically strong tranquilizers eg Olanzapine, Quetiapine etc Some people claim that Lithium helps. Others feel it doesn’t. In my experience, there is a lot more to be gained from looking from an environmental and emotional perspective. Including addressing lifestyle issues.

When it comes to the “chemical imbalance” theory, it is not possible to measure neurotransmitter levels in the brain of a live human. Information sources e.g. brochures sponsored by drug companies, make unscientific and unproven claims that anti-depressants rebalance brain neurotransmitter levels.

However, it’s been known since at least 2001 that anti-depressants, instead of bringing “balance”, can lead to mania & psychosis in some people [2]. These drugs do not “unmask” serious mental health conditions, as some Psychiatrists try to claim. They cause them.

Potential adverse effects of anti-depressants are not highlighted enough to ensure the person has informed consent. “Anti-depressants” can turn mild / moderate, temporary feelings of Depression into a more chronic condition called tardive dysphoria, according to medical journalist Robert Whitaker and his research. This has been my experience of the drug Citalopram [3].

Prior to initiating treatment with an antidepressant, patients with depressive symptoms should be adequately screened to determine if they are at risk for bipolar disorder; such screening should include a detailed psychiatric history, including a family history of suicide, bipolar disorder, and depression” [4]. Due to family history relating to my father I should never have been put on an antidepressant for anxiety as it triggered mania/psychosis and resulted in a diagnosis of Bipolar. Something similar happened to my 1st cousin.

According to Dr John Studd, in women sometimes severe Premenstral tension is misdiagnosed as Bipolar with tragic consequences. “Examples are given of patients who have had between 5 to 20 years of mood stabilising drugs, multiple admissions to hospital, ECT and in one case severe renal damage due to 20 years of Lithium. It is not known how frequently severe PMS is misdiagnosed as Bipolar disease by Psychiatrists but it does occur”. [5]

In the current system people are told that Bipolar is a life long illness that will require medication for life. Such a prognosis, while being very lucrative for the pharma industry, can be a life sentence for many and also takes away hope of true healing. With the right information and knowledge, healing is possible.

In her book clinical Psychologist Lucy Johnstone highlights that the process of recovery has to start with the most accurate description of what is going on for the person [6]. In the current system this sometimes gets hidden, overlooked or forgotten, in the rush to label and prescribe psychoactive drugs.

I found the book by Declan Henry called Why Bipolar? to be very good. A review of this book that I wrote can be found here [7].

The work of Sean Blackwell was a big part of my own recovery journey, as I was left to deal with my last episode of mania/psychosis alone (December 2012). Not something I recommend but I got through it and haven’t experienced ‘Psychosis’ since [8]. See my blog entitled An Open Dialogue around Psychosis.

Dr Terry Lynch has also a great insight into Bipolar and has set up online courses [9]. And this is what Prof Ivor Browne has to say “Every third person who comes to me now is labelled Bipolar … If you looked back, that was once considered a rare condition and what’s more, most people eventually recovered” [10].

In the field of mental health people need to be as informed as possible as some day, without much warning, we can find ourselves, a relative or a friend coming in contact with the current mental health system. While some people may feel they benefit from been told they have Bipolar, in my experience with the stroke of a pen a Psychiatrist can change a person’s life. For a decade I’ve been left picking up the shattered pieces. I am a work in progress. On one levels it has been a Spiritual journey. If only that side of the experience was recognised at the beginning and supported in a therapeutic way, as opposed to the over reliance on the dominant biomedical / drug approach which caused a lot of trauma, suffering and harm, delaying my healing.

Tips on Dealing with Symptoms of Bipolar

“Honour the physical temple that houses your body by eating healthfully, exercising, listening to your body’s needs and treating it with dignity and love” Wayne Dyer

One way to manage Mania is not to engage too much with the Ego. I learned about the Ego in Eckhart Tolle’s book A New Earth [11]. “Unless you know the basic mechanics of the Ego, it will trick you into identifying with it again and again”.

Other ways of managing the highs and lows of Manic Depression ~

  • Develop a good sleeping pattern and wind down in the evening

  • Learn about nutrition & cook nutritious meals. Watch diet and sugar intake. Take a good quality multi-vitamin (without copper). Learn about foods that help to balance mood [12]

  • Avoid too much stimulants e.g. a doctor once advised me that I should have only one coffee a day and in the morning

  • Work on developing self-awareness, as sometimes awareness is lost during an episode e.g. with money & spending. Learn to recognise the symptoms at an early stage and use techniques to get some balance back. Keeping a journal.

  • When you develop self-knowledge, work with that knowledge and try not to repeat past mistakes

  • Use a calendar or yearly diary / planner to track changes in symptoms

  • Don’t be seduced by the “high” as it can be very seductive. Try not to feed it and not to over-stimulate yourself.

  • Mind yourself and take it easy, but at the same time have goals

  • Avoid alcohol or street drugs. Alcohol is like adding fuel to the fire. It can make the highs higher and the lows lower.

  • Learn about WRAP (Wellness Recover Action Plan) and have a WRAP plan [13]. The plan needs to be very specific about the steps you need to take to alleviate low or overly elevated moods.

  • Identify and resolve triggers, including what can trigger strong emotions and learn constructive ways of dealing with this.

  • Learn how to self-sooth in positive ways. This can be written into the WRAP plan.

  • Develop self confidence and a sense of Self. Dr Terry Lynch wrote a good book called Selfhood [14].

  • Try to create a support network made up of people who are understanding of the symptoms and supportive of your healing journey. Join a support group.

  • Work on relaxation daily e.g. daily meditation, Yoga, learn to breathe properly

  • Drink enough water

  • Stay hopeful for Recovery and healing. Visualise the end result.

  • Bibliotherapy ~ reading books can help with mood but some of what’s learned from books will need to be put into action for the knowledge to be effective.

  • Develop structure in the day and week. Manage time as much as possible. Use a diary.

  • Write down important things that need to be done each week.

  • Work with your skills, strengths and creativity

  • Work towards achieving balance in the various areas of life. The Happiness Habit identifies the following areas ~ Career & Finance, Personal development, Health & Fitness, Spiritual, Contribution, Family & Social, Fun & Creativity, Mental & Emotional [15]

  • Ask yourself the question if you had only one month to live what would you do

  • Learn to replace bad habits with more useful habits and build this into a daily routine

  • Reward yourself each time you make progress and remind yourself how much better you are getting. When it comes to any setbacks be gentle and kind to yourself, like you would be with a good friend. Pick up the pieces and start again.

  • Accept where you are on your journey

  • Practice self-compassion. Try not to be too self-critical.

  • Let go of Perfectionism

  • If there is trauma from the past or issues that need to be discussed, some Psychotherapy and/or counseling can be helpful.

  • People need to feel that their life has meaning and a purpose and to be able to make a contribution to their community [16]. This may be through paid work or voluntarily. It may not be possible to work, but having a part-time or full-time job can give the week structure. Some jobs are more stressful than others, so that needs to be factored in. People should not be pressured about their work status but instead should be gently encouraged or told about potential opportunities that are out there. Trying to intimidate a person about their work status can be very unhelpful. Some people are doing their best. Their is a lot of social stigma out there relating to unemployment.

There is an energy that comes from a mild ‘high’ (hypomania) that just needs to be channeled in the right direction. I try to be self-aware of my mood and take corrective action. Even 10 mins of Yoga and some meditation can help ground me.

Recovery and healing usually just doesn’t happen. Time has to be made for it. Changes need to be made in daily and weekly routines. Sacrifices may have to be made to make progress. The body needs balance and depends on biorhythms. Regular eating and sleeping patterns are important. And routine.


Bipolar InOrder

Tom Wootton founded Bipolar Advantage with the mission to help people with mental conditions shift their thinking and behavior … His most recent work focuses on moving beyond recovery in bipolar disorder to what he calls Bipolar In Order” … “The medical model that only sees Bipolar as a disorder or an illness is not working. The assessments, tools, and goals are all based on the idea that Bipolar is a disease that must be managed toward reduction if not completely eliminated. It is a system that has been proven not to work by their own studies and is unacceptable given that we have already produced much better outcomes” [17].

Wootton lays out his roadmap for living with bipolar disorder not as a disorder or condition that needs to eradicated and “cured,” but one that needs to be better understood and accepted – and even embraced – by oneself. Embraced in the sense of understanding the pros and cons of one’s moods and finding a balance to bring them into a state where one can live with them and leverage them to improve one’s life” [18].

Lithium

To write about the subject of Lithium I have consulted Dr David Healy’s book “Mania: A Short History of Bipolar Disorder” [19]. Some quotes and information at the start of this blog are from his book.

As an alkaline substance, Lithium was initially used to treat gout and rheumatic conditions. “While using Lithium to treat gout, Garrod reported that patients often showed a general sense of well-being”, pg. 92. Considering the more recent knowledge about inflammation that functional medicine doctors discuss, I find this interesting.

The key individual in the emergence of a prophylactic use of Lithium for mood disorders is Carl Georg Lange”, pg. 94. Another person to use Lithium with some success in treating Manic symptoms in patients was John Cade in Australia. However the toxic effect of Lithium carbonate caused the death of some of his patients. “The use of Lithium was linked to cardiac difficulties and it was banned by the FDA in 1949 … The question of toxicity highlighted the need to establish a safe dose and to be able to monitor treatment”.

But consider what makes for a placebo response. The natural history of mood disorders means that many will improve within a few weeks whether treated or not. It is also widely thought that sensible clinical advice on matters of diet, life-style, alcohol intake, and work and relationship problem solving may make a difference. It is suspected that patients’ perceptions that they are being cared for by a medical expert may make a difference, and this effect may be enhancing by being given a substance they think will restore chemical imbalance to normal – even if that imbalance is mythical and the substance is placebo. The fact that the patients present themselves for treatment may also make a difference. All of these factors are reflected in the placebo response. But it is not possible to quantify the distinct contribution of these components” pg. 129.

My experience on Lithium

I now want to talk about my own experience with Lithium and some of the things I learned when on it. It may under certain conditions lead to kidney damage and/or damage to the thyroid. If a woman becomes pregnant on Lithium it can damage the developing foetus.

In 2008, after my Adverse Drug Reaction to the anti-depressant Citalopram and when mainstream Psychiatry had hastily slapped on the label Bipolar 1 (while ignoring advice in DSM-IV-TR [20]) I was put on Lithium. According to Dr Healy’s book, Bipolar 1 only affects about 1 in 100,000 people, so it is a rare condition. I’ve also learned that from Prof Ivor Browne. From my reading, I do believe that the overuse of anti-depressants is one of the factors that have caused the current Bipolar epidemic.

When I was introduced to Lithium, it appeared to be informed consent at the time. Someone talked to me about this drug and I was given some material to read, but it wasn’t true informed consent. I wasn’t fully aware of the truly toxic nature of this drug. I was put on 1000 mg and ended up on that dosage for nearly 2 years. I had regular blood tests to see if the the Lithium levels were in the so called therapeutic range, as well as thyroid function tests.

After the anti-depressant Citalopram caused mania / psychosis or what I refer to as “SSRI induced Bipolar type symptoms” (August 2008), I have 9 foolscap pages showing the large cocktail of expensive drugs I was on from when I left hospital in October 2008 up until August 2011. While on Lithium (and Seroquel) I had a long Manic episode in 2010, for about 3 months. I don’t remember Seroquel having any benefit at all. I don’t feel that Lithium did anything for me therapeutically either, in a true sense. I was eventually switched from Seroquel to Olanzapine in June 2010 and things improved i.e. I eventually came out of that horrendous episode, which may have seemed fun at the time but I also remember feeling that I just wanted the “manic” feeling to end.

I also decided to come off Lithium towards the end of that “episode” and I let the Psychiatrist know. I withdrew from Lithium in jumps of 200 mg, which is far too fast a rate. As I write this I wonder why the Psychiatrist didn’t give me a strict warning and a better withdrawal plan. I was still going to see him on a regular basis (up until January 2012 when I left mainstream Psychiatry behind me and their drugs, other than a few 5mg Olanzapine that I kept on standby for a while. These pills eventually went out of date, which in hindsight meant this whole disaster was coming to some kind of ending).

When jumping down off Lithium at what I now realise was a fast rate, I would have gone into withdrawal, with all the symptoms that goes with that. I became very depressed after coming off it and, due to the brainwashing about Manic Depression, felt that this was just part of “my illness”. I was lethargic and lay in bed with not much interest in life. Based on what I now know about the complexity of the withdrawal process, I now see this differently and realise Lithium withdrawal was the cause of my symptoms.

I felt that Lithium blunted my emotions and also remember the day when this “fog” lifted and I started to feel again. I cried when I realised what the drug had done to me. I regret taking Lithium.

My father was on Lithium for years and his thyroid was affected by it. While he died from prostate cancer, I sometimes wonder if the kidney failure he experienced towards the very end of his life had something to do with being on this drug long term!

An Unquiet Mind by Kay Redfield Jamison

When I first read An Unquiet Mind [21] a number of years ago, while still ingrained in the biomedical model and on the drugs, I thought it was a good book. When I re-read it recently I see things differently now, not forgetting that it’s over 2 decades since it was published (1995). Jamison is a talented writer.

When she talks about the marvelous kind of cosmic relatedness, “the webbings of the universe”, and how everything seems interrelated even when sometimes others can’t see, I can relate to that. It tries to describe in words the experience of mania / psychosis (loss of touch with so called reality), which is not so easy to write about or even to describe verbally. A person’s thoughts can become out of control and tolerance can be lacking from others.

She says in her book that she briefly took antidepressants but they only made her more dangerously agitated. She also claims that it is not uncommon for depressed doctors to prescribe anti-depressants for themselves and that the results can be disastrous.

Even though she praises Lithium as a wonder drug in her life, the efficacy and safety of Lithium is not as compelling as she claims. She also admits that she had she continued to experience fluctuations in mood while on Lithium. When she eventually had her dosage of Lithium reduced “it was as though I had taken bandages off my eyes after many years of partial blindness … I wept for the poignancy of all the intensity I had lost without knowing it and I wept for the pleasure of experiencing it again … the subtle, dreadful muffling of the senses”. I can relate to this when I think back to the time I was coming off Lithium.

Dr Jamison talks about the mind healing if it is given a chance. She also mentions how important love is in the healing process and that it can act as a very strong medicine. The love and support of others helped her through.

Several times she refers to the hereditary nature of Manic Depression and she mentions ongoing genetic research, but in reality no true bio-markers have been found. Even today over two decades later. While Dr Yolande Lucire has discovered that there can be a problem metabolizing the drugs and there may be a genetic aspect to that [22], in general nothing of real significance has materialised because of genetic research into Manic Depression / Bipolar, that I’m aware of.

She talks about the brain-damaging effects of stopping medication. While people have to be very careful changing or stopping prescribed drugs, if anything the opposite is true. The drugs cause brain damage. Olanzapine, for example, which came to the market in 1996 [23]. Changes in the brain can sometimes be explained by treatment history, as opposed to “mental illness”. In 2005, a study funded by the maker of Zyprexa / Olanzapine, found that chronic / long term exposure to this major tranquilizer causes shrinkage of the brain. “significant reduction in brain volume that affects both gray and white matter”! I learned about this from honest Psychiatrists Dr Peter Breggin and Dr Joanna Moncrieff. I was put on Zyprexa, at what I now consider too high a dosage (10mg) long term in 2008! I did not have informed consent about this powerful but potentially damaging drug. Very short term use would have been enough and proper advice about withdrawal and stopping. Something I never got from a private hospital. I was let out the door with nothing but a prescription. I ran to the train and thought all was great. I stopped this expensive, powerful tranquilizer as I had not been told doing so would lead to withdrawal symptoms.

2 weeks later I went into what I now know to be withdrawal and akathisia (a severe inner restlessness). I ended up back in hospital for a month, a broken woman. The year that followed is a complete blur and the last decade has been very difficult because of what I was put through. Mainstream Psychiatrists I saw at the time withheld valuable but vital information.

Symptoms are not always beyond our control and we are not as “beholden to medication” as some would like us to believe. But that takes patience, self-discipline, persistence and daily work on physical / emotional well-being. As well as tolerance of setbacks and support from others. I do not believe Bipolar is a life long illness or disease, but if that is what you tell your sub-conscious, it can become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Hope of recovery is a cornerstone of the healing process.

I do feel that my symptoms were mainly iatrogenic i.e. caused by taking the SSRI anti-depressant Citalopram for anxiety (2005 to 2008). I haven’t experienced Mania / Psychosis since December 2012. I was prone to relapse for at least 2 years after all the drugging. Support from doctors was lacking. They seem to have no problem getting you on a drug but stopping their cocktail of drugs is frowned upon.

I still struggle with certain issues e.g. Sleep and irritability (which can be related to hormonal issues). I have problems with my circadian rhythm, which seems to have worsened since I was on all the prescribed psychoactive drugs [24]. I suffer from Tardive Dysphoria, where anti-depressant use turned a milder Depression into a more severe, chronic condition.

I’m all for personal responsibility, but the bottom line is I feel mainstream Psychiatry got it very wrong at the start and caused major, ongoing, devastating trauma in my life on many levels. I’m still coming to terms with that and learning to let go.

“A person should be enabled to reach a point of inner peace, self-empowerment and contentment” Dr Terry Lynch

Lets Blame Genetics or Not ?

In my experience, claiming Manic Depression / Bipolar is genetic :

a) allows mental health professionals to rush to a wrong diagnosis, without examining the facts before their eyes e.g. the person may be having a drug reaction.

b) increases social stigma and discrimination. Including from within the family itself.

c) can leave the person thinking they can do nothing about their symptoms, as opposed to helping empower the person to bring about change in their own lives. Which requires daily work on physical / mental health and a holistic approach.

d) leaves those who have children anxious that their children could be next or those who have had a parent with this diagnosis anxious. This sometimes becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Thanks to the work of people like Dr Yolande Lucire, there is one aspect of genetics however that may be very relevant. Sometimes people genetically can’t metabolize certain drugs [22]. Forensic Psychiatrist Dr Yolande Lucire explains that not all people are born with a full complement of metabolizing enzymes, increasing the risk of side effects which can range from mild to life-threatening. Changing dosage up or down and starting / stopping drugs are also crucial times, sometimes affecting the person months after stopping. “There is a genetic problem in the cytochrome P450 (CYP450) family of metabolizing genes”.

It can be drugs that are causing the symptoms (prescribed or illicit). Those who have experienced trauma in life may be more likely to end up on prescribed drugs in the first place. In my own experience I was prescribed the drug Citalopram as I was suffering from severe anxiety and panic attacks, which would link back to some trauma in childhood and probably some lifestyle factors. This anti-depressant triggered mania and psychosis leading to a diagnosis of “Bipolar” in 2008, without factoring in that the drug was more than likely a major cause of my symptoms. I also have a 1st cousin that took a similar drug (Escitalopram/Lexapro) and ended up with the same diagnosis! My father was also given the label Manic Depression and experienced symptoms up until 1983 (which was for about a decade and then didn’t have obvious symptoms for the ten years up until his death in 1993). I now know that drugs can cause highs and lows. One day I will have the relevant test based on Dr Lucire’s work.

In many families there is a certain amount of dysfunction and inter-generational trauma. Not forgetting in Ireland it’s only a few generations ago that we had the trauma of the Famine. In my case about 4 or 5 generations back, as my grandparents were born in the late 1800s or very early 1900s. It may be more helpful to explore these traumas. Family therapy may also have a role to play.

Generations of families, especially in Ireland, have been indoctrinated into the flawed biomedical model. It can sometimes be more convenient to blame genetics than address issues and struggles within the family. Or within society itself.

In my opinion and there are experts that say this, research into genetics is not a priority. Money would be better spent on supporting families where a parent is going through emotional distress, in parenting courses and in helping children build resilience. Young people would benefit from learning about stress management and how to cope with anxieties early on in their lives [25]. They also need support with trauma e.g. if their parents separate or any childhood bereavement. Play therapy can also help younger children work through certain issues [26]. Play therapy is “a form of counseling or Psychotherapy in which play is used as a means of helping children express or communicate their feelings”.

Quote from Psychiatrist Dr Joanna Moncrieff ~ “The idea that we are doomed by our genetic make-up to develop life-threatening or disabling conditions is surely a profoundly depressing one. We will likely never be able to fully account for why some people experience extreme mental states, but we know that poverty, unemployment, insecure attachments, familial disruption, low self-esteem, abuse etc. play a role for many. We would be better concentrating on how to eliminate these from our society if we really want to reduce the impact of mental disorder, rather that pouring more money into the bottomless pit of genetic research” [27]. While this article is about “Schizophrenia”, this can also apply to Manic Depression / Bipolar.

“Today’s Psychiatry has strong eugenic roots in this 19th-century political philosophy. Its current obsession with genetics maintains that tradition” [28]. When it comes to Manic Depression/Bipolar, no true biomarkers have been found and no significant genetic abnormalities have been reliably identified, that I’m aware of. When I wake up in the morning, whether or not mental health issues are genetic is irrelevant. Once I let go of blaming “faulty genetics” and started to see a more holistic picture of health, there was a lot more room for healing. When it comes to mental health there is nothing wrong with my genes. I feel we are a bit more prone to anxiety than some. There are people in my family who have had a lot of success in life.

{ Important Do not stop or change prescribed psychoactive drugs without consulting your prescriber, due to the dangers of withdrawal. Any changes need to take place under the supervision of an expert. Some people may feel they benefit from Lithium or other drugs I mention here. What I discuss in part of this blog is my own experience and is not medical advice. We all have our own unique journey.}

Note ~ ‘Psychosis’ does not necessarily mean the person will become violent, even though that is how it is portrayed in the media and by some Psychiatrists in the courts. We are not always given the full picture e.g. what drugs or alcohol the person was taking and the effect withdrawal from or stopping drugs, both prescribed and illicit, can have on the person’s mental state.

References

[1] Depression Delusion: The Myth of the Brain Chemical Imbalance ~

www.amazon.com/DEPRESSION-DELUSION-Volume-One-Imbalance/dp/1908561017

My review of this book ~ www.goodreads.com/user/show/46943899-anne

[2] Antidepressant-associated Mania and Psychosis resulting in Psychiatric admissions, 2001

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11235925 (Yale study)

[3] Now Antidepressant-Induced Chronic Depression Has a Name: Tardive Dysphoria, 2011

by medical journalist Robert Whitaker ~

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/mad-in-america/201106/now-antidepressant-induced-chronic-depression-has-name-tardive-dysphoria

[4] FDA document Revision of Product Labelling ~ https://www.fda.gov/downloads/Drugs/DrugSafety/InformationbyDrugClass/UCM173233.pdf

[5] Severe PMS and Bipolar Disease – a tragic confusion, Dr. John Studd ~

http://www.studd.co.uk/bipolar.php

[6] A Straight Talking Introduction to Psychiatric Diagnosis by Lucy Johnstone
www.amazon.co.uk/Straight-Introduction-Psychiatric-Diagnosis-Introductions/dp/1906254664

My review of this book ~
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/cr/rRZTSBCCI1MGDN/ref=aw_cr_i_1

[7] My review of Why Bipolar? by Declan Henry ~

https://www.facebook.com/DeclanHenryIrishAuthor/posts/1573462929337695:0

[8] Sean Blackwell’s work ~ www.youtube.com/user/bipolarorwakingup

[9] Dr. Terry Lynch has information and courses on the topic of Manic Depression / Bipolar ~

http://doctorterrylynch.com/tag/bipolar-disorder/

[10] Most people labelled as having Depression have suffered grief that hasn’t been resolved ~
www.herald.ie/lifestyle/health-beauty/most-people-labelled-as-having-depression-have-suffered-grief-that-hasnt-been-resolved-31216116.html (Prof Ivor Browne, 2015)

[11] A New Earth Eckhart Tolle, 2009
www.amazon.co.uk/New-Earth-Create-Better-Life/dp/0141039418

[12] Action plan for Bipolar ~
www.foodforthebrain.org/nutrition-solutions/bipolar-disorder/action-plan-for-bipolar-disorder.aspx

[13] Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) by Mary Ellen Copeland et al ~

www.mentalhealthrecovery.com/

WRAP Crisis Plan & Working Through Hard Times (includes link to pdf)
www.mentalhealthrecovery.com/info-center/crisis-plan/

[14] Selfhood by Dr Terry Lynch, 2011 (includes practical exercises to work through) ~

www.amazon.com/SELFHOOD-Emotional-Wellbeing-Prevention-Psychology/dp/1908561009

[15] The Happiness Habit by Brian Colbert, 2010

www.amazon.com/Happiness-Habit-Choose-Path-Better/dp/0717147762
See exercise on pg. 79 (Cutting the cord) and The Magpie Technique (involves recognising achievements in life)

[16] Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl (first published in 1946) ~

www.amazon.com/Mans-Search-Meaning-VThe Happiness Habitiktor-Frankl/dp/080701429X

Viktor Frankl was a Psychiatrist that survived the concentration camps in WWII

[17] The Six Stages of Bipolar and Depression by Tom Wootton ~

www.bipolaradvantage.com/six-stages-bipolar-depression/

[18] Bipolar InOrder ~ Book reviewed by John Grohol
www.psychcentral.com/lib/bipolar-in-order/

[19] Mania: A Short History of Bipolar Disorder by Dr David Healy (2008)

https://www.amazon.com/Mania-History-Bipolar-Disorder-Biographies/dp/1421403978

[20] Suicidality, violence and mania caused by selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs): A review and analysis ~
http://breggin.com/wp-content/uploads/2005/01/31-49.pdf

DSM-IV-TR “emphasizes that a diagnosis of Mania or Bipolar Disorder should not be made when the hypomania or mania first appears while the individual is taking a medication that can cause these symptoms”. DSM-IV-TR (2000) ~ Diagnostic and Statistics Manual. Fourth edition, text revision.

[21] An Unquiet Mind by Kay Redfield Jamison (1995) ~

www.amazon.com/Unquiet-Mind-Memoir-Moods-Madness/dp/0679763309

[22] Adverse Drug Reactions (Dr Yolande Lucire, Forensic Psychiatrist) ~
http://www.drlucire.com/adverse-drug-reactions.html

[23] “The Influence of Chronic Exposure to Antipsychotic Medications on Brain Size before and after Tissue Fixation…” ~ http://www.nature.com/npp/journal/v30/n9/full/1300710a.html

[24] What is Circadian Rhythm ?

https://sleepfoundation.org/sleep-topics/what-circadian-rhythm

[25] 7 Ways to Help Students Who Struggle with Anxiety ~

www.weareteachers.com/7-ways-to-help-students-who-struggle-with-anxiety/

[26] The Efficacy of Play Therapy With Children: A Meta-Analytic Review of Treatment Outcomes ~

https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/c74c/5352290babfa53960f1f6e74c2591ef3e88b.pdf

[27] A critique of genetic research on schizophrenia – expensive castles in the air ~

www.joannamoncrieff.com/2014/09/01/a-critique-of-genetic-research-on-schizophrenia-expensive-castles-in-the-air/

[28] Physician heal thyself’ may be impossible task for a Psychiatry profession in crisis ~

www.theconversation.com/physician-heal-thyself-may-be-impossible-task-for-a-psychiatry-profession-in-crisis-30845


Other useful Resources

* PMS (Pre-menstral Syndrome) ~
https://www.marilynglenville.com/womens-health-issues/pre-menstrual-syndrome/

* Menopause ~ https://www.marilynglenville.com/womens-health-issues/menopause/

* The Secret Life of a Manic Depressive presented by Stephen Fry ~

www.topdocumentaryfilms.com/stephen-fry-the-secret-life-of-the-manic-depressive/

* Why Bipolar by Declan Henry, 2013 ( I highly recommend this good book) ~

www.amazon.com/Why-Bipolar-Demystification-Affective-Disorder/dp/0957689306

* How to Avoid a Manic Episode ~ www.bpso.org/nomania.htm

{I agree with some but not all of what’s in this link but it has useful tips e.g. Reduce stimulation and decrease activity}

* Moving From Bipolar Disorder To Bipolar IN Order ~ www.youtube.com/watch?v=e4mTW-3mpMM

* Think Twice: How the Gut’s “Second Brain” Influences Mood and Well-Being

www.scientificamerican.com/article/gut-second-brain/

* Psychiatric Drug Withdrawal A Guide for Prescribers, Therapists, Patients and their Families

www.breggin.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=296

* An independent drug safety website to help you weigh the benefits of any medication against its potential dangers. www.rxisk.org

* Council for Evidence Based Psychiatry ~ www.cepuk.org

* Corrina Rachel speaking to Sean Blackwell about Bipolar ~

www.youtube.com/watch?v=WLIeS6idzD4

* GROWing towards recovery: a re-enchantment with life – Mike Watts ~

www.youtube.com/watch?v=g08yo4Phwic

* The Feel Good Factor: 10 Proven Ways to Feel Happy and Motivated by Patrick Holford, 2011

www.amazon.com/Feel-Good-Factor-Proven-Motivated/dp/0749953160

* The Feeling Good Handbook by David D. Burns, 1999 (CBT ~ Cognitive Behaviour Therapy)

www.amazon.com/Feeling-Good-Handbook-David-Burns/dp/0452281326

* 8 Tips to Help Stop Ruminating ~
www.psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2014/02/16/8-tips-to-help-stop-ruminating

* Fish oil Bipolar treatment benefits ~ www.bipolar-lives.com/fish-oil-bipolar.html

* Medication-free Alternatives for Long-term Maintenance of Bipolar Disorder: A Case Series ~

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4424923/

* Treatment of bipolar, seizure, and sleep disorders and migraine headaches utilizing a chiropractic technique, Elster, 2004 ~

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15129207

* ‘The Myth of the chemical cure’ Dr Joanna Moncrieff ~

www.psychologytoday.com/blog/rethinking-mental-health/201602/joanna-moncrieff-the-myth-the-chemical-cure

* Joanna Moncrieff – The Myth of the Chemical Cure: The Politics of Psychiatric Drug Treatment ~

www.youtube.com/watch?v=IV1S5zw096U

* Play Therapy Ireland ~ www.playtherapy.ie

* The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families by Stephen Covey, 1998 ~

www.amazon.com/Habits-Highly-Effective-Families/dp/0307440850

* R D Laing used work of Nash and Game theory to study human relationships (18 & 25 mins) ~

www.ruthenians.net/kArpatia/portfolio/the-trap-episode-1-fk-you-buddy/

* Music and Madness, Prof Ivor Browne, 2008 ~

www.amazon.co.uk/Ivor-Browne-Music-Madness/dp/0955226120

* Your Best Year Yet by Jinny Ditzer (2006) ~

www.amazon.co.uk/Your-Best-Year-Yet-months/dp/0007223226

* Men’s Sheds ~ www.menssheds.ie/

* Soteria ~ a network of people in the UK promoting the development of drug-free and minimum medication therapeutic environments for people experiencing ‘psychosis’ or extreme states www.soterianetwork.org.uk

Definitions

Family therapy “is a type of psychological counseling (psychotherapy) that helps family members improve communication and resolve conflicts” www.mayoclinic.org

“Family systems therapy draws on systems thinking in its view of the family as an emotional unit. When systems thinking—which evaluates the parts of a system in relation to the whole—is applied to families, it suggests behavior is both often informed by and inseparable from the functioning of one’s family of origin”

https://www.goodtherapy.org/learn-about-therapy/types/family-systems-therapy

Pharmacogenetics “is the study of inherited genetic differences in drug metabolic pathways which can affect individual responses to drugs, both in terms of therapeutic effect as well as adverse effects” (Wikipedia)

 

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2 thoughts on “What is Bipolar / Manic Depression ?

  1. Hi Anne, check out RxISK.org (Dr. David Healy) website for the 4-part series “A Unicorn: Changing a Medical Diagnosis” regarding my vacation of a “lifelong” bipolar 1 diagnosis & SMI certification; only one of two I’ve found in the U.S.
    The 4th essay drops 8/20/2018.
    Krista Hartmann

    Liked by 1 person

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