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Is medication necessary to help with bipolar or can other therapy methods help?

6 Answers
Last Updated: 03/02/2021 at 10:45am
1 Tip to Feel Better
United Kingdom
Moderated by

Lisa Meighan, MSc Psychology


Hello, I am Lisa and I work in a person-centred approach mixed with cognitive behavioural therapy. I believe we all have the potential to be the best we can be.

Top Rated Answers
August 30th, 2016 2:59pm
It is not mandatory to take medication however I take mine for a few reasons. One I want to never have to say I am sorry I didn't take them and now I am in some kind of mess that could have been prevented by medicine. second I may not notice the difference other than an absence of symptoms that I should not have to deal with anyway, so I feel more like an ordinary person and that's the point. That said there is a place for other therapy methods. I say don't rely on medicine alone.
May 8th, 2017 4:20am
Great question! Bipolar disorder is a chronic mood disorder that is manifested by an imbalance of chemicals called neurotransmitters. Dysregulation of Dopamine is a possible culprit in this disorder and therefore medication is necessary to assist in feeling balanced. there are various treatment options for Bipolar disorder including lithium, Depakote and anti-epileptics. Treatment options will differ based on the type of Bipolar that is present such as Bipolar with Mixed mania or Bipolar with Depression.
December 16th, 2020 7:00pm
Specialists can better see when medication is necessary and how it needs to be set with each patient but self-help strategies, can make a huge difference in managing your bipolar disorder. They do not replace medication but they can help you increasing the coping mechanism which can result in feeling better. So certain strategies can go together with the needed medication and when they work well the specialist can suggest to lessen the dosage, it's always something to see with them. But it also means that there is something you can do actively for your well being. You can make your plan on self-help strategies.
September 17th, 2018 1:23am
I think it varies person to person and the extent of your symptoms. Some people are able to manage with CBT and other therapies alone, some need medications to keep them stable. I personally have always been a strong believer in the monoamine hypothesis and therefore a supporter of medication as I think it really gives you a boost to your therapy and gives you a step in the right direction, but it's not for everyone and that's okay too! I think a combination of medication and regular therapy is the true recipe for success rather than one over the other.
December 20th, 2019 10:13pm
Bipolar is a chronic disorder. You can't cure it so you manage it. Brain chemicals are imbalaced and need constant regulation provided by continuous medication and CBT might be helpful for more effective results. The combination is important and sticking to it is also more important to control it otherwise the relapse may be harder and might take longer to control. Concerning mania episodes, mostly you can feel them coming when you feel that sudden dopamine rush so by getting to know the prodrome you will be able to plan to control the episode in some way to stay safe, even hypomania needs to be monitored for eventual suicidal thoughts and depressive episodes. Hope that was helpful.😊
March 2nd, 2021 10:45am
It's not necessary to take medicines. Bipolar can't be cured, we just can manage it well. So sometimes it is necessary to take medicines. Ot may help with both mania and hypomania. Since it helps brain to stimulate certain hormones and helps us with our depressive our suicidal episodes. I guess professional specialists can tell you more about it since it depends on your condition. If you have severe symptoms than I would definitely advice to take meds. Medicines are not bad. They are made so that we can get some help through them. Sometimes only therapy can work too. So your dosage of med can be reduced or totally cut of. So it really depends on your condition and severity of your case. Hope you got what you are looking for😊 Ana❤