Bipolar Disorder and Substance Abuse
People diagnosed with bipolar disorder commonly abuse opiates, cocaine and alcohol. The bipolar mania offers a natural high similar to being on cocaine and bipolar individuals may look for cocaine to produce extra energy when mania ends. Some may experience their mania coupled with insomnia, which can have a negative impact on cognitive function. The addict may use alcohol to help slow down the mania but, unfortunately, alcohol continues to cloud cognitive function. Individuals with bipolar also use alcohol to escape the extreme sadness and feelings of despair associated with bipolar depressive episodes. Alcohol, cocaine and opiates are interchangeable abused substances based on the individual’s preference of choice.
No matter a person’s substance of choice, using drugs or alcohol to control mood swings is unhealthy and can lead to unwanted dependency. Substance abuse complicates the symptoms of bipolar disorder and makes bipolar medications ineffective. Some addicts neglect to take their medications and many use their money to purchase drugs or alcohol instead of prescriptions. It is best for the bipolar addict to enter addiction treatment for dual diagnosis to stabilize mood while eliminating substance abuse.
Bipolar Disorder and Addiction Treatment