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Asho2345

Just got BP2 w/rapid cycling dx

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So pdoc told me today I have bipolar 2 rapid cycling with anxiety and possible (probable?) OCD. Any advice or anything  would Be great 

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For me stability comes as a result of a few things

  • Taking medication as prescribed and don't stop just because you're feeling well again. You are feeling well and stable  because you are taking your meds!  
  • Keep a mood diary recording medications taken, how much sleep you have got, any stress you are experiencing, any changes going on in your life and rate your anxiety level and mood.
  • If you notice any change in your mood or any signs that things are not quite right, contact your pdoc. It is better to be safe than sorry. Early intervention is better than developing a full blown episode!
  • Try to have a regular sleep pattern
  • Get regular exercise. Even a short walk can help you feel better. Just getting out of the house into the fresh air and daylight is good
  • Remove yourself from situations that are "toxic" such as disputes or highly stressful situations. Everybody has their own stuff that upsets them
  • Me time, personal space, quietness, relaxation is good
  • Learning to say no. I find if I have too much going on my mood goes a bit off
  • Do things that you enjoy. I love listening to music and reading

I'm sure there are more but that's all I can think of right now!!

Also, I really should take my own advice! I do try to but not always

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1 minute ago, rowan77 said:

For me stability comes as a result of a few things

  • Taking medication as prescribed and don't stop just because you're feeling well again. You are feeling well and stable  because you are taking your meds!  
  • Keep a mood diary recording medications taken, how much sleep you have got, any stress you are experiencing, any changes going on in your life and rate your anxiety level and mood.
  • If you notice any change in your mood or any signs that things are not quite right, contact your pdoc. It is better to be safe than sorry. Early intervention is better than developing a full blown episode!
  • Try to have a regular sleep pattern
  • Get regular exercise. Even a short walk can help you feel better. Just getting out of the house into the fresh air and daylight is good
  • Remove yourself from situations that are "toxic" such as disputes or highly stressful situations. Everybody has their own stuff that upsets them
  • Me time, personal space, quietness, relaxation is good
  • Learning to say no. I find if I have too much going on my mood goes a bit off
  • Do things that you enjoy. I love listening to music and reading

I'm sure there are more but that's all I can think of right now!!

Also, I really should take my own advice! I do try to but not always

Meds is definitely something helping me recover, I get a lot of exercise as I walk to school and back every day often plus more, I really think I should learn to say no more.

Do you find sleep affects episodes or episodes affect sleep? or both? 

 

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Just now, Asho2345 said:

Meds is definitely something helping me recover, I get a lot of exercise as I walk to school and back every day often plus more, I really think I should learn to say no more.

Do you find sleep affects episodes or episodes affect sleep? or both? 

 

Definitely! If my sleep is disrupted, especially sleep deprivation. My thoughts start racing, I become irritable and energized and this is often the start of mania for me. Missing a whole night's sleep leaves me tired but wired. Any more sleep loss than that I can start to become manic.

Then when I am manic I can go days without sleep or as little as 2 or 3 hours a night and not feel tired at all

And when I'm depressed I sleep excessively.

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Sleep and mood are almost completely intertwined for me.  I've been having sleep issues ever since the start of this episode and it's impacted my mood frequently.  For me, it's not necessarily less sleep = mania/hypomania.  But it's definitely less sleep = something's off-kilter. 

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16 hours ago, dancesintherain said:

Sleep and mood are almost completely intertwined for me.  I've been having sleep issues ever since the start of this episode and it's impacted my mood frequently.  For me, it's not necessarily less sleep = mania/hypomania.  But it's definitely less sleep = something's off-kilter. 

so basically less sleep = bad news?

Edited by Asho2345

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that's how it is for me.  I can't speak to everyone, but to me, less sleep either means that I'm headed toward an episode of some flavor or I'm stuck iin it and it hasn't completely gone away. 

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Another rapid-cycler! I find mood charting to be very useful to help see how long my moods actually last, and then I can help prepare myself and those around me when I know things are going to get rough. It takes a little while to get a complete picture, especially if you're titrating meds, but eventually you can see the pattern start to emerge.

And sleep seems to be one of the most important mood regulators!

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As far as the possible/probable OCD is concerned, I found that for me, education was a huge piece of the puzzle. It helped me learn that the disturbing thoughts I was having was just a product of the OCD, and not a reflection of me as a person, which was a huge relief. I'm learning to identify which of my thoughts are just the OCD speaking and although I don't have a great way to get rid of the thoughts yet, just knowing what they are is a huge help, for me at least.

I was also able to figure out that when I'm having a BP episode, my OCD gets worse (which makes my mind a big effing party). I don't know if that's true for you, but it's helpful when you've got multiple things going on to be able to identify which symptoms belong to which illness... to me, it makes things feel less messy. 

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8 hours ago, NerdyUnicorn said:

As far as the possible/probable OCD is concerned, I found that for me, education was a huge piece of the puzzle. It helped me learn that the disturbing thoughts I was having was just a product of the OCD, and not a reflection of me as a person, which was a huge relief. I'm learning to identify which of my thoughts are just the OCD speaking and although I don't have a great way to get rid of the thoughts yet, just knowing what they are is a huge help, for me at least.

I was also able to figure out that when I'm having a BP episode, my OCD gets worse (which makes my mind a big effing party). I don't know if that's true for you, but it's helpful when you've got multiple things going on to be able to identify which symptoms belong to which illness... to me, it makes things feel less messy. 

I definitely think the episodes make my OCD worse as well, thats helped me also, knowing that its the illness and not me being a psychopath, and also that other people understand what I'm going through, has there been any good techniques that have helped with your OCD?

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So far, my therapy for OCD has been mostly identifying which of my thoughts are OCD (hint: a ton) and then trying not to use my compulsions to get rid of the thoughts. My compulsions are mostly mental, so you don't see them, but that almost makes it more difficult because I perform the compulsions (like "unthinking" certain things or replacing "bad" thoughts with "safe" ones, or even just yelling "STOP!!!" at the thoughts) without knowing I'm doing it. So after not performing compulsions, my therapist says I have to learn how to "sit" with the thought... super uncomfortable, but apparently it works. So I guess the big picture here, from what I've been taught, is awareness/mindfulness of thoughts, uncomfortable and comfortable. That's my experience, at least. 

But that's all super hard to do when I'm manic because the thoughts are just flying around my head so quickly. I've learned how to control things pretty well during depressive episodes, but mania is just plain awful for me; when I'm manic, and the OCD and anxiety have gotten even uglier than normal, I work on distress tolerance skills. 

I see from your signature you do CBT? That's what I do too, and it's been SOOO helpful. I just have to make sure I ask for help with the right issues (i.e. when to work on OCD stuff vs BP stuff, based on the constellation of symptoms I have at the time). 

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Nothing will propel me into an episode faster than disruption of my sleep habits. And I take my meds. And I've learned to go get a med tweak sooner rather than later when I feel shit starting to slip. 

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