Psychosis is an element of bipolar I disorder that is often taken for granted. Despite this, this symptom is considered a devastating part of the condition. This is described as the presence of delusions and hallucinations. Hallucination refers to sensing things that are not actually present in real time. This can involve the sense of touch, taste, smell, sound, and sight. Delusions are described as false beliefs that are not true at all.
In Bipolar disorder, psychosis often presents in such a way that they frighten the person suffering from the condition. For instance, a person with the condition may believe that there are bombs implanted in the walls of his house. While psychosis can actually appear in either mania or depression, this commonly appears in mania. For some cases, this may be considered as the defining factor of their mania. It is important, however, to remember that psychosis only appears in bipolar I disorder and not in bipolar II. Moreover, the psychosis may be inconsistent or consistent with the mood of the person suffering from the condition.
People suffering from the condition may lose touch with reality making it difficult for them to make treatment decisions. However, some people with this condition are aware that they are experiencing psychosis. For such case, this person will most likely seek and initiate treatment for his or her condition. When treating bipolar disorder with psychotic features, it is very important to take the person suffering from the condition into consideration. It is essential that proper assessment be initiated to determine the severity of the condition. For severe cases, comprehensive treatment plan may be used.
The treatment of bipolar disorder with psychotic features is complicated. This is because mania and depression are present. Fortunately, the medications that are used to treat depression and mania can also help prevent and control psychosis. However, this is not always the case. For this reason, many people suffering from this condition take antipsychotic together with other medications for bipolar disorder. The common medications given to people with bipolar disorder include lithium and anticonvulsants. Lithium is considered as an effective mood stabilizer. This medication can control mania as well as psychosis. Anticonvulsants may also be prescribed. This type of medication helps regulate moods and manage mania. With the successful management of mania, psychosis may also be controlled by this medication. When these two medications are successful in the treatment of bipolar psychosis, additional antipsychotics may not be prescribed. It is important to note that these medications come with side effects. Thus, it is important to consider this when determining the dose of the medications. The health care provider often adjusts the doses basing on the severity of the condition.
Since these medications do not always work well for everyone suffering from this condition, individual approach in the treatment of bipolar psychosis is necessary. The health care provider, basing on the individual needs of the affected person, formulates a treatment plan, which may or may not include prescribing bipolar medications. Aside from the medications that are prescribed, the alternative course of treatment may also be necessary. For instance, psychotherapy may be indicated for those who are suffering from severe psychosis. The affected person is required to undergo intensive therapy sessions to help him or her cope with the problems brought about by the condition. There are also instances wherein in-house rehabilitation is required. For such cases, the person with bipolar psychosis is enrolled in a facility where he or she is subjected to close monitoring on his or her treatment and recovery.