Hi, I am currently in the process of being assessed for manic depression... Does anyone have any advice on how to calm my highs so that I don't lose my job an annoy people around me, and also how to snap myself out of the lows where the erge to end everything is very overwhelming? Xx
I do understand what you're going through and it sounds like you are doing the right thing. Seeing someone about it and getting help. Unfortunately there are no quick tricks that will calm the highs and lift the lows but there are things you can do.
Meds is one of the biggies... most people with bipolar (manic depression) need meds.
Routines is the other big one.
Getting enough sleep is vitally important. Having a set time you go to bed and wake up.
Eat regular healthy meals.
Exercise. It will help with both ends.
Being aware of your moods so that you can try and bring them under control. It's always tempting so tempting to let them go at least on the way up. But generally the more you let your mood swing up, the harder the crash will be.
I'm not saying any of these things are easy. I'm currently low as anything and think if my mood starts to go up I will not be wanting to hold it back (or possibly even tell my doc so they can adjust my meds accordingly)!!
It can be manageable though, but you need someone you can trust to help you through it.
I have bipolar and was diagnosed in 2002. Bipolar, like so many mental illnesses, is a difficult disorder to manage. I follow the recommendations passingthrough listed. I also see a psychologist every other week (sometimes weekly) and my psychiatrist on a regular schedule. Right now since I am having problems and making many med changes I am seeing her weekly too. I usually see her every 4 to 6 weeks.
I journal as it helps me track how I am doing and get my feelings out.
I keep a mood journal/chart. I use Optimism. It is available online, on computer and on iPod/iPhone. It is the best one I have found because you can personalize it to your triggers and symptoms.
I take my medications regularly and at the dose set by my psychiatrist. Too many people quit taking the medications when they feel better or when they are frustrated that they aren't working as well as they could. Meds don't work unless you take them as prescribed.
Remember that bipolar is a life-long disorder. You need to start paying attention to how you feel, what is happening around you when you feel that way and continue to work on it when you are stable.
I have developed some things that help me when I am not doing well but I created them when I was doing well b/c it can be hard to think clearly when in an episode. One thing I do when I am manic is spend money. I made a spreadsheet that keeps a record of everything I spend beyond basic living expenses. When I see the total rise above normal I take stock of my spending. When well, I have written up a list of reasons to live. It is posted on my refrigerator. I also made a weekly chores list for when I am depressed as the house seems to fall in around me unless I have and follow the list, at least to some extent.
Living with bipolar means you have to adapt and prepare.