The most common medication used for treatment is mood stabilizers. Mood stabilizers help to control the mood swings associated with bipolar disorder. There are a variety of mood stabilizers available, and each one works differently. Your doctor will work with you to find the medication that works best for your child.
- Lithium: referred to as the “gold standard” for bipolar treatment, lithium is one of the more common medications used to treat the condition. It works by balancing the neurotransmitters of the brain. Approved for children aged 7 to 17.
- Prozac (fluoxetine) and Lexapro (escitalopram) are antidepressants used to stabilize and regulate moods. Antidepressants specifically target the depressive stages of bipolar disorder. Both are FDA-approved for teen use, but only fluoxetine is approved for use in children.
- Atypical Antipsychotics are used to treat the psychosis that can accompany bipolar disorder. They work by balancing serotonin and dopamine levels, allowing the affected person to better differentiate between reality and unreality. Only some atypical antipsychotics are FDA-approved for use in teens under 17 years old.
Regardless of the information you find online, it is always the best course of action to consult a health professional who is familiar with your child’s condition and history before making any decisions.
Medication Side Effects
Please be aware that medications may come with side effects. Be honest with your doctor about possible symptoms; they’re here to make managing illness easier.
Some possible side effects of drugs for bipolar treatment include:
- Weight gain,
- Fatigue and energy problems,
- Concentration issues,
- Dry mouth,
- Appetite changes –
– and others. It is important to review any possible side effects with your teen before administering medication. Ensure that they fully understand the drug they are taking and how it could make them feel.
Therapy is another common treatment for Bipolar Disorder. There are a variety of therapies available, and each one is tailored to the individual. Therapy can help control mood swings, manage symptoms, and improve relationships.
Cognitive Behaviour Therapy
Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) is a type of therapy that focuses on changing the thoughts and behaviors that contribute to symptoms. CBT can help manage Bipolar Disorder.
Making healthy lifestyle changes can be an important part of treatment for bipolar disorder. Adolescents may need to make changes to their diet, exercise habits, and sleep schedule. These changes can help stabilize mood swings and reduce symptoms of bipolar disorder.