• bipolar-disorder-treatment-maryland

    Turbulence is life force. It is opportunity. Let's love turbulence and use it for change.

    - Ramsay Clark

  • Bipolar Disorder

    We all experience changes in mood. Times of sadness or disappointment are natural reactions to the difficulties that occur in our lives. The loss of a loved one, problems at work or a deteriorating relationship can cause us to feel depressed. Similarly, a great success or relief from a problem makes us feel happy and content.

    Our moods tend to be varied and shifting, but generally we feel as though we have some control over them. However, for people with mood disorders like depression and bipolar disorder, that sense of control is missing and that causes distress. Anyone who has experienced a major depression or a manic episode can readily tell you the difference between those illnesses and their own normal feelings of sadness or happiness.

    Severe or prolonged depression is an illness that affects not only a person’s emotions, but also physical health, relationships and behavior. More than 2 million American adults, or about 1 percent of the population age 18 and older in any given year, have Bipolar Disorder.

    Bipolar disorder, also called manic depression, is an illness in which there are periods of serious depression, followed by episodes of markedly elevated or irritable moods or “highs” (in the absence of drugs or alcohol). These mood swings are not necessarily related to events in the person’s life.

    Bipolar Disorder is not to be confused with mild mood swings. Those suffering from Bipolar Disorder lead very unstable lives, and the potential of mania or depression is a constant problem for them.

    It is not known what causes bipolar disorder. Research suggests that people with the condition have a genetic predisposition – it tends to run in families. Drug abuse and stressful or traumatic events may contribute to or trigger episodes.

    Symptoms of mania include:

    • Feelings of euphoria, extreme optimism, exaggerated self-esteem
    • Rapid speech, racing thoughts
    • Decreased need for sleep
    • Extreme irritability
    • Impulsive and potentially reckless behavior

    Symptoms of the depression phase are the same as in major depression, described elsewhere on our website.

    Treatment is Available

    Depression and bipolar disorder are treatable. Learning to recognize the signs and triggers enables people to work with their doctors, other health professionals, family and friends to prevent recurrences from becoming severe.

    The great majority of depressed people respond to treatment and nearly all who seek treatment will get some relief from their symptoms. Both medication and some forms of counseling or psychotherapy have been demonstrated to be effective.

    Bipolar disorder is mainly treated with medication and psychotherapy. Medication helps to stabilize moods, while therapy helps people detect patterns and triggers and develop strategies for managing stress. Sometimes, in very severe cases that don’t respond to other treatments, electroconvulsive therapy, or ECT, is used.

    Many people do not seek help for depression or bipolar disorder, sometimes because their symptoms prevent them from recognizing the seriousness of their situation. It can also result from the stigma that surrounds both of these conditions, making people feel like they are weak or somehow at fault. It is important to know that depression and bipolar disorder are treatable. Friends and family can be supportive by learning all they can about the condition affecting their loved one.


    At Potomac Psychiatry our psychiatrists and therapists specialize in treating bipolar disorder, Call 301.984.9791 to contact us, discuss your needs and schedule an appointment. Our experienced professionals look forward to meeting you.

    Our offices are conveniently accessible from the following communities:

    Maryland (MD):
    Bethesda 20814 - Bethesda 20816 - Bethesda 20817 - Chevy Chase 20815 - Colesville 20904 - Cabin John 20815 - Glen Echo 20812 - Gaithersburg 20855 - Gaithersburg 20877- Gaithersburg 20878 - Gaithersburg 20879 - Garrett Park 20896 - Kensington 20895 - Montgomery Village 20886 - Olney 20830 - Olney 20832 - Potomac 20854 - Potomac 20859 - Rockville 20850 - Rockville 20852 - Rockville 20853 - Silver Spring 20903 - Silver Spring 20905 - Silver Spring 20906 - Silver Spring 20910 - Takoma Park 20912 - Wheaton 20902

    Washington DC:
    Crestwood 20011- North Capitol Hill 20002 - Cathedral Heights 20016 - American University Park 20016 - Columbia Heights 20010 - Mount Pleasant 20010 - Downtown 20036 - Dupont Circle 20009 - Logan Circle 20005- Adams Morgan 20009 - Chevy Chase 20015 - Georgetown 20007 - Cleveland Park 20008 - Foggy Bottom 20037 - Rock Creek Park - Woodley Park 20008 - Tenleytown 20016

    Northern Virginia:
    McLean 22101- McLean 22102 - McLean 22106 - Great Falls 22066 - Arlington 22201 - Arlington 22202 - Arlington 22203 - Arlington 22205 - Falls Church 22041 - Vienna 22181 - Alexandria 22314