Life has its ups and downs. Whether we’re moving forward or standing still, there are countless twists, turns and obstacles along the way. This is a normal part of being human, so we press on through the highs and lows. But for those with bipolar disorder, these variations are more extreme, with fluctuations in mood, thinking and behavior that are disruptive to normal functioning. Emotions can become so volatile that it becomes difficult to maintain a sense of stability and balance in day-to-day life. Bipolar disorder treatment is necessary to reduce the severity and number of episodes of mania and depression to have a normal life as possible.

At Alta Loma, our goal is to help residents reclaim a sound mind and learn how to cope with their mental health symptoms. We provide comprehensive care for men of all ages dealing with a range of mental disorders, including bipolar disorder, co-occurring addictions and their impact on daily life. Backed by a team of highly qualified experts, our programs address the unique needs of each individual and help establish a strong foundation for lasting recovery.

Just minutes from Austin, TX, our team is ready to help

If you or someone you care about is struggling to address your need for mental health, Alta Loma could mean the difference between relapse and long-term recovery

Young man having a normal life after Bi Polar disorder treatment

What is Bipolar Disorder?

Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition that causes sudden mood swings. People with bipolar disorder also have difficulty concentrating and experience energy shifts that make it difficult to perform their daily activities. Alta Loma Transformational Services has several programs for treating bipolar depression and acute mania, giving people with bipolar disorder the support they need to improve their mental health.

There are two distinct phases of bipolar disorder, which include manic and depressive stages. During manic episodes, individuals experience symptoms of euphoria, increased energy, irrational thinking, and, in some cases, delusions. This is often followed by a depressive episode, characterized by a decreased mood, low energy levels, and little to no interest in hobbies or activities.

There are also different types of bipolar disorder (primarily type 1 and 2), and the extent to which an individual experiences these symptoms depends on their diagnosis. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), published by the American Psychiatric Association, those with bipolar I disorder are prone to full-blown manic symptoms, which can last for days or months, while individuals with bipolar II disorder experience less intense hypomanic and depressive symptoms. While hypomania isn’t as severe as a manic episode, both can be frightening, debilitating, and disruptive to normal functioning.

What Causes Bipolar Disorder?

While no one knows the exact cause of the bipolar disorder, some common risk factors have been identified, including a history of substance abuse, trauma and mental illness within the family. There also seems to be some overlap between bipolar disorder and autism spectrum disorders like Autism Spectrum Disorder. In most cases, a combination of these and other factors likely play a role in its development.

  • Brain structure and chemistry — Some research shows that individuals with bipolar disorder have distinct differences in their brains that may contribute to the condition. It was also recently discovered that gene expression patterns in the brains of those with bipolar disorder and autism are surprisingly similar.
  • Environment — While looking for causes of bipolar disorder, researchers found that those who have it were more likely to have experienced trauma, extreme stress or abuse during their childhoods.
  • Genetics — Bipolar disorder is much more common in people who have close family relatives (parents or siblings, for example) with the condition.
  • Substance use — Prolonged substance use can change how the brain functions by affecting important neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin. Drug use can’t cause bipolar disorder, but it can trigger its onset and contribute to worsening symptoms.

While it’s not always clear why some people develop bipolar disorder and others don’t, there are treatment options available that can help regardless of the cause. To treat bipolar disorder, a combination of therapy and mood-stabilizing medication can get individuals back on track and help them identify the onset of manic or depressive symptoms, stabilize their moods and develop an “emergency plan” for when manic or hypomanic episodes do occur.

Bipolar Disorder and Autism Spectrum Disorder

Research shows that those with Autism Spectrum Disorder are more likely to be diagnosed with bipolar disorder than the general population. In fact, studies have found that 27 percent of children with an autism spectrum disorder also exhibit signs of bipolar disorder. This may be linked to overlapping gene expressions within the brain, giving rise to shared symptoms and a high rate of comorbidity. The similarities can make finding a proper diagnosis difficult, but identifying a co-occurrence of Autism Spectrum Disorder and bipolar disorder can improve treatment strategies and ensure better outcomes by addressing both conditions simultaneously.

At Alta Loma, we provide comprehensive care that can help men struggling with Autism Spectrum Disorder and bipolar disorders. We specialize in dual diagnosis recovery and recognize the unique challenges these individuals face, so our treatment plans are tailored to meet their exact needs. Delivered in a supportive setting with the guidance of a highly collaborative group of doctors and clinicians, our program is uniquely qualified to help those with co-occurring disorders achieve a lasting sense of mental wellness.

Young man having coffee and smiling concept image for treating bipolar disorder, mood disorders and related disorders
If you’re wondering about the causes & treatment of bi-polar disorder — we can help!

Alta Loma is your Bipolar Disorder Treatment team near Austin, TX

Treating Bipolar Disorder at Alta Loma

Alta Loma goes above and beyond to help men with chronic mental health conditions and co-occurring disorders overcome their challenges. Our programs integrate all aspects of emotional and mental wellness into a resident’s bipolar disorder treatment plan, helping them further stabilize their moods and work on achieving long-term recovery. This approach ensures each individual’s needs are met and that the messages, therapies and services we deliver are cohesive throughout the Bipolar disorder treatment process. Some of the techniques we use include:

  • Psychiatric assessments
  • Integrated mental health and addiction treatment
  • Medication management
  • Life skills education
  • 12-step support
  • Comprehensive care coordination
  • Nutrition plans
  • Strategies for healthy living

Our goal is to provide men with mental health disorders a safe landing place to begin healing and learn how to manage their symptoms. The long-term continuum of care available at Alta Loma will help residents move toward healthy and sustainable independent living while helping to mitigate the stress and anxiety that often arises during early recovery and transitional periods. Contact us today and start your path to recovery.