Bipolar Treatment: Trauma as a Risk Factor

Posted on August 19, 2023 by Corner Canyon Publishing
Bipolar Treatment: Trauma as a Risk Factor

Bipolar disorder, a mood disorder associated with dramatic mood, energy, and concentration changes, causes many challenges. It can make daily life necessities feel practically impossible. While there are many reasons why a person may develop bipolar disorder, trauma is highly associated with bipolar disorder. Getting bipolar treatment that addresses related trauma, as well as other mental health challenges, is essential. Corner Canyon Health Centers offers bipolar treatment that can be the start of a happier and healthier life. In treatment, you can get support and care that are based on your unique needs, symptoms, and background. 

Bipolar Disorder

As a mental health disorder, bipolar disorder impacts how you feel day to day.  It is distinguished by unusual and drastic shifts in mood, activity, concentration, and overall energy. If you are struggling with bipolar disorder, you experience two main types of challenges. This includes manic episodes and depressive episodes. 

During a manic episode, you will have very high energy. Often, during mania, you will tend to keep little and be moving so quickly that it is challenging for others to keep up. The feeling of a manic episode includes elation and hyperactivity that results in talking quickly, racing thoughts, and having an unquenchable desire for things that you enjoy. 

Bipolar disorder is also distinguished by depression episodes. These are essentially the opposite of manic episodes. During a depressive episode, you are likely to have an increased need to sleep. Additionally, you are likely to feel sad, depressed, or anxious. Doing daily tasks can feel like a mountain to climb during a depressive episode. 

Bipolar Disorder and Trauma

When trauma occurs at any point in your life, it can derail your mental and physical health. However, trauma is also associated with developing bipolar disorder. Trauma is when you experience an event or events that cause you distress or fear. Both witnessing and directly experiencing an event can result in trauma. 

When you have a traumatic experience, your brain and body often struggle to process it. As a result, unprocessed trauma can cause many issues. However, even when trauma is processed, it can cause changes in the brain that make you more susceptible to mental health challenges, including bipolar disorder. 

Childhood Trauma

Bipolar disorder is well connected to childhood trauma. Many research studies have shown a direct link between childhood trauma to developing bipolar disorder. These studies shine a light on how bipolar disorder often develops and the importance of addressing trauma in bipolar treatment. 

The connection between childhood trauma and bipolar disorder is based on the understanding that trauma impacts your brain. Stress in your life in childhood or adolescence can disrupt your development. If your genetics hold the key to bipolar disorder, trauma can turn the key to unlock the door. After trauma, your development is then altered, and these alterations play a role in developing bipolar disorder. 

However, other theories that work to explain the connection between bipolar disorder and childhood trauma exist. Some believe that inflammation caused by trauma in childhood contributes. At the same time, others theorize that trauma impacts sleep which then contributes to the development of bipolar disorder. 

Bipolar Treatment

Treatment for bipolar disorder is different for each person. Your treatment will be based on your specific type of bipolar disorder, past history, and unique symptoms. An individualized treatment plan ensures that you are receiving assistance to manage your mental health challenges, which can vary greatly in bipolar disorder. 

However, bipolar treatment often includes a combination of medication and psychotherapy. There are multiple different types of medication used that help to stabilize your mood and address your symptoms. Many types of psychotherapy are helpful in bipolar treatment. This includes cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), interpersonal and social rhythm therapy (IPSRT), and family-focused therapy (FFT). 

Corner Canyon’s Bipolar Treatment

Bipolar treatment at Corner Canyon Health Centers is an individualized treatment plan that takes your needs into account. With individualized care, you will be treated with modalities that suit you and your specific challenges with bipolar disorder. 

Addressing Trauma in Bipolar Treatment

Addressing trauma in bipolar treatment is often helpful. Due to the link between trauma and bipolar disorder, it is common to find bipolar disorder and a history of trauma together. Therefore, it is most effective to address trauma as a part of bipolar treatment. 

Addressing trauma in mental health treatment can and will look different for each person. Different therapeutic modalities, however, can help you to reprocess trauma and heal. Additionally, treatment will help you heal from associated challenges you are experiencing, like substance abuse or a mental health disorder like bipolar disorder. 

It is important to remember that addressing trauma in bipolar treatment does not immediately stop bipolar symptoms. However, the processing of trauma can benefit your mental health in many ways and is an important piece of mental health treatment. 

While bipolar disorder is not a risk factor for trauma, trauma is a risk factor for bipolar disorder. The connection between trauma and bipolar disorder is well established. Therefore, it is important that trauma treatment plays a role in bipolar treatment for those who have struggled with both. At Corner Canyon Health Centers, we understand that every individual is unique. However, we also understand the connection between trauma and mental health disorders like bipolar disorder. Our treatment takes both into account. If you or someone you love is struggling with trauma, mental health disorders like bipolar disorder, or substance abuse, we can help. Call us today at (877) 717-6237 to learn more.