Mood Disorders Association of Manitoba Presents. RECOVERY AND EMPOWERMENT for people with bipolar illness . RECOVERY AND EMPOWERMENT for people with bipolar illness . What is bipolar disorder Symptoms of Highs Symptoms of Lows Causes of Bipolar Disorder
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Or Manic Depression (as it used to be known)
is a treatable illness marked by extreme changes in mood, thought, energy, and behaviour.
You may have bipolar illness if you have some or all of the following symptoms of depression and mania
NO TREATMENT CAN CURE BIPOLAR DISORDER,
IT IS UP TO YOU
1 in 4 Canadians will be affected by a Mood Disorder this year
The Canadian economy loses
52 Billion dollars per year
Due to Mood Disorders
90% of people who have a mood disorder
never seek treatment
Bipolar Disorder affects approximately 1.5% of all people.
In Canada, more than 450,000 people have, or will have this disorder.
Although not a single cause has been identified, it is known that many factors, including biochemical, genetics, and environment play a part in this illness.
Fortunately, very effective treatments are available to stabilize your mood and help you regain and maintain a satisfying and productive life.
Patterns and severity of symptoms, or episodes, of highs and lows, determine different types of bipolar disorder.
Many people with Bipolar disorder try toself-medicate
with alcohol and illicit drugs
“Drown their sorrows”
By using alcohol or other substances
to reduce the pain or induce euphoria.
This only worsens the mood disorder.
Living with bipolar disorder can be discouraging, particularly when relapses occur
or in times of distress.
But there is hope for recovery.
People who live with bipolar disorder
can have satisfying and productive lives.
Many say they value the insight and sensitivity they have gained from their experience.
There are always new thing to learn and do for ourselves
Having an improved quality of life
Accomplishment of life goals
living a satisfying life
with meaning and purpose.
Having what we feel are meaningful, purposeful activities.
Being part of our community in a meaningful way.
Success is not simply an absence of symptoms or a reduction in inpatient admissions to hospital.
Success is also measured by how well we are able to pursue the things that give
our lives purpose and meaning.
We must choose to:
Believethat it is possible to have a better life.
Believethat we are more than our illness
Believethat we have the skills, talents and ability to change
We must choose to:
Believethat we, the individual, deserves dignity, love and happiness
Believethat we have the ability to address the dissatisfaction we have with our present disabling and disempowering circumstance
Believethat we are responsible for our own life.
Believe that we have the ability to change the thoughts and behaviours that are barriers to our recovery.
1.Having decision making power
We need to be able to make our own decisions about the treatment that is best for us.
We also must be allowed to make our own decisions about our own lives if we wish to gain a sense of independence.
2.Having Access to Information
We need to educate ourselves about our illness and how it is affecting our body,
Only then can we empower ourselves
to make the best choices for
our OWN recovery.
3. Having a Range of Options from Which to Make Choices.
We, as people with lived experience need to be aware of what choices are
available to us.
Those with lived experiences need to know how to request what we want and need correctly.
5. A Feeling that the Individual can make a Difference.
We must be hopeful and believe that
and that with effort on our part there will be a change to our current position.
6. Allowing us to reclaim “OUR OWN STORY.”
We are often made to feel that we are a case history and not a real person with real life experiences.
We need to tell our story and have people listened to it.
This is where self-help groups can play an important part in the process.
7. Not Feeling Alone, Feeling Part of a Group
Empowerment best occurs when an individual does not feel alone
but feels a part of a group,
a connection with other people.
8. Understanding that People have Rights
We with lived experience need to believe
that we are entitled to the same
basic human rights that any other
individuals are entitled to.
9. Affecting change in one’s life and one’s community
When we feel empowered
we not only feel a change in our own life,
but can work toward
changing the lives of others
10. Learning skills that the individual defines as important.
The emphasis needs to be on what
the individual deems is important to them.
We will feel empowered only
when we have been given the ability
what is important to us.
11. Changing others perceptions of one’s competency and capacity to act.
When individuals with lived experience feel competent
around the so called “normal” people
in our life,
we become empowered.
12. Increasing one’s positive self image and overcoming stigma.
When we are truly empowered, we are confident enough to let people know we have an illness.
This will help lessen the stigma and we will begin to feel more confident and capable
13. Growth and change that is never ending and self-initiated.
…Life is only 10% what happens to me
90% how I react to it
Being diagnosed with a mental illness is like having any other serious medical condition.
It means being more careful in how you live your life.
You need to live a more
And put together your own
1)Tell someone how you feel.
Ask them to just listen to you.
No interruptions, advice, criticism, or judgments just listen.
This will help you feel better.
2) Take a rest from your responsibilities.
Don’t leave all your duties completely, just simplify.
Avoid making any major decisions.
Ask if employer will make allowances for you at work.
DON’T ISOLATE YOURSELF.
Medications taken to improve our functioning sometimes make us feel physically worse than the illness itself.
There are many different types of medications.
You don’t have to live with unacceptable side effects.
Too many people stop taking medications for this reason;
Medications need to be taken for a long period of time to be effective.
4) Limit Alcohol and Drug use:
Continued abuse of alcohol
dependence on street drugs
--even marijuana-- could alter the course of the illness.
DON’T SELF MEDICATE
5) Monitor sleep:
Normal sleep occurs with fatigue and reduced stimulation.
In bipolar disorder, loss of sleep can precipitate or exacerbate an episode of mania.
Even losing one night of sleep may trigger an episode.
You need at least 6 to 8 hours of sleep a night.
Too much sleep can start an episode of depression.
6) Positive thinking:
Your attitude is perhaps the most important thing you can do towards your own recovery.
You are the only one who has full control of
Go to bed and get up at a regular time.
Establish a bedtime ritual.
Do something calming before bed.
Not sleeping is serious with bipolar illness.
8) Get some exercise.
Any movement will help.
Don’t do too much at once.
Climb the stairs, take a walk, sweep the floor, etc.
Don’t rush from one thing to another.
Live in the moment.
9) Spend time outdoors
At least a half-hour per day.
Again, don’t overdo it.
Walk or just sit outdoors. Even if it is cloudy or rainy.
Roll up the shades, let the sun in.
Turn on the lights.
10) Eat healthy foods
Avoid sugar, caffeine, alcohol, and heavily salted foods.
If you can’t cook for yourself, ask a friend or family member to cook for you.
Buy healthy frozen or canned foods.
Make sure you eat 3 to 6 small meals a day, don’t skip meals.
11) Obsessing and Negative thoughts.
Obsessing can make those issues larger than they really are.
Divert your attention.
Do something you really enjoy such as gardening, crafts, playing with your pet, reading.
Try turning negative thoughts around to positive thoughts. Train yourself and make it a habit.
Sit in a comfortable chair.
Loosen any tight clothing.
Take deep breaths (BELLY BREATHING)
Relax every part of your body. Start with your toes.
Notice how your body feels.
Focus on a favorite scene.
Do this for at least 10 minutes a day.
Balanced intake of food is needed to provide vitamins and nutrients that are essential for a healthy body and mind.
Nutrients are not stored so they must be replenished at regular times.
14) Build a strong Support system:
Surround yourself with people you trust and respect.
You must be willing to accept their support
especially at times when your judgment regarding mental health may be impaired.
15) Build a therapeutic Partnership with your Doctor
Shared common insights:
Empathy and Honesty
Persistence-commitment to working at getting better
Unconditional Positive Regard
Build a therapeutic Partnership with your Doctor continued
Positive therapeutic relationship is more important than the therapy used.
You can’t do this alone, yet you are the only one that can help yourself.
Inform yourself about your condition or you will forever be subject to it’s whims.
16) Financial Management:
Prepare a budget – learn to live within your means.
Make financial decisions before episodes occur.
Put limits on your spending by decreasing
your credit and withdrawal limits.
17) Add structure to your life
It is important to have regular times for sleeping, meals, medication, exercise and social activities.
Don’t overbook activities.
Focus your energies, if you get sick you accomplish nothing
First rule Self-help.
18) Educate yourself about your illness
To be an effective advocate for yourself and the type of treatment you receive, you will need to know what you are talking about.
Knowledge is power
19) Join a support group
Getting together with people who also have an illness such as those in support groups helps.
Check the times for groups at the Mood Disorders Association of Manitoba
20) Write a plan to keep yourself well
Making time for paying bills, buying groceries, or cleaning your home.
Watching for early warning signs of the illness.
Signs of getting much worse.
Watch for signs that you are cycling higher.
Everyone develops a different recovery plan,
and the right one
is the one
that works for you!
Recovery is a journey filled with hope:
Look after yourself.
No one else can do it as well as you can!!!!
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