Bipolar Disorder Therapists in Portland, OR

Photo of Molz Wirtz-Wold, MS, LMHC, LPC, Counselor
Molz Wirtz-Wold
Counselor, MS, LMHC, LPC
Verified Verified
Portland, OR 97203
I also specialize in supporting folks with bipolar find and maintain balance and stability.
Accepting clients as of 6/11/24. A therapist for 19 years, I am a good fit for people looking for a non-judgmental, open, directive and creative clinician. I support individual adults and couples/relationships from an attachment and relational approach. I am very experienced in supporting transgender, queer, polyamorous and/or sex positive clients. People looking for a safe space to be their authentic selves are welcomed. I am queer, transgender, autistic and have lived experience as a fat bodied person.
I also specialize in supporting folks with bipolar find and maintain balance and stability.
Accepting clients as of 6/11/24. A therapist for 19 years, I am a good fit for people looking for a non-judgmental, open, directive and creative clinician. I support individual adults and couples/relationships from an attachment and relational approach. I am very experienced in supporting transgender, queer, polyamorous and/or sex positive clients. People looking for a safe space to be their authentic selves are welcomed. I am queer, transgender, autistic and have lived experience as a fat bodied person.
(503) 379-9742 View (503) 379-9742
Photo of Ghesline DePedro, MA, LPC Intern
Ghesline DePedro
LPC Intern, MA
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Portland, OR 97214
Areas I treat include PTSD, trauma, bipolar disorder, sexuality and relationship issues, lgbtqia+ concerns, suicidal ideation, depression and anxiety.
Finding the right fit can be daunting, sometimes even traumatizing. In order to facilitate a genuine connection with clients. I meet clients where they are at using trauma-informed care, cultural competency, and a person centered approach. This means I am carful to avoid re-traumatization, I respect clients’ personal values, and I approach clients with unconditional positive regard even when discussing potentially difficult topics such as suicidal ideation or sexuality. I prioritize developing a safe, confidential space for clients to explore the challenges that brought them into therapy.
Areas I treat include PTSD, trauma, bipolar disorder, sexuality and relationship issues, lgbtqia+ concerns, suicidal ideation, depression and anxiety.
Finding the right fit can be daunting, sometimes even traumatizing. In order to facilitate a genuine connection with clients. I meet clients where they are at using trauma-informed care, cultural competency, and a person centered approach. This means I am carful to avoid re-traumatization, I respect clients’ personal values, and I approach clients with unconditional positive regard even when discussing potentially difficult topics such as suicidal ideation or sexuality. I prioritize developing a safe, confidential space for clients to explore the challenges that brought them into therapy.
(503) 966-8960 View (503) 966-8960
Photo of Pamela Self, LCSW, CADCI, Clinical Social Work/Therapist
Pamela Self
Clinical Social Work/Therapist, LCSW, CADCI
Verified Verified
Portland, OR 97232
Waitlist for new clients
I work with a variety of unique and extraordinary adults experiencing mental health challenges, including: Trauma/PTSD, Psychosis/Schizophrenia, Bipolar disorder, sexual abuse, first responders, aging, anxiety, anger management, attachment issues, behavioral issues, cognitive challenges, depression, domestic abuse, suicidal ideation, and self-harm.
In my experience as a mental health therapist, I have had the honor and privilege to be a part of a person’s life who is struggling with mental health. At a young age, I always had an interest and curiosity in the people I encountered in my life, and this continues to hold true to this day. I am continually amazed and inspired by the courage and resiliency of people. We are all in this beautiful life together and sometimes we just need additional support to help us navigate our complicated world. I am a “think outside the box” kind of therapist and will build treatment plans based upon your needs and what works for you.
I work with a variety of unique and extraordinary adults experiencing mental health challenges, including: Trauma/PTSD, Psychosis/Schizophrenia, Bipolar disorder, sexual abuse, first responders, aging, anxiety, anger management, attachment issues, behavioral issues, cognitive challenges, depression, domestic abuse, suicidal ideation, and self-harm.
In my experience as a mental health therapist, I have had the honor and privilege to be a part of a person’s life who is struggling with mental health. At a young age, I always had an interest and curiosity in the people I encountered in my life, and this continues to hold true to this day. I am continually amazed and inspired by the courage and resiliency of people. We are all in this beautiful life together and sometimes we just need additional support to help us navigate our complicated world. I am a “think outside the box” kind of therapist and will build treatment plans based upon your needs and what works for you.
(503) 852-2820 View (503) 852-2820
Photo of undefined - Joy Wilson, LMHCA, Counselor
Joy Wilson
Counselor, LMHCA
Verified Verified
2 Endorsed
Portland, OR 97222
I have a great passion for empowering those suffering from chronic mental health disorders such as BIPOLAR disorder.
Our life stories do not always have the fairy tale endings that we hoped for, but we are not mere puppets. We are active agents in pursuit of meaningful moments and positive outcomes. I will help you identify your strengths and collaborate with you to find solutions to challenges in your story. I strive to provide a counseling relationship in which you can feel safe, heard, and supported as you explore or process whatever you choose.
I have a great passion for empowering those suffering from chronic mental health disorders such as BIPOLAR disorder.
Our life stories do not always have the fairy tale endings that we hoped for, but we are not mere puppets. We are active agents in pursuit of meaningful moments and positive outcomes. I will help you identify your strengths and collaborate with you to find solutions to challenges in your story. I strive to provide a counseling relationship in which you can feel safe, heard, and supported as you explore or process whatever you choose.
(503) 850-8088 View (503) 850-8088
Photo of Jon Keyes, LPC, Licensed Professional Counselor
Jon Keyes
Licensed Professional Counselor, LPC
Verified Verified
Portland, OR 97215
I believe each one of us often knows the best steps they can take to help them feel their strongest, but that sometimes we need support and encouragement to take those steps. I often work with clients who have experienced trauma and stress and are stuck and trapped in patterns that no longer serve them. My role as a therapist is to support you to walk your healthiest path. I often help people who struggle with a variety of issues including anxiety, depression, social anxiety, adhd, extreme states, bipolar disorder, addiction and sleep disorders.
I believe each one of us often knows the best steps they can take to help them feel their strongest, but that sometimes we need support and encouragement to take those steps. I often work with clients who have experienced trauma and stress and are stuck and trapped in patterns that no longer serve them. My role as a therapist is to support you to walk your healthiest path. I often help people who struggle with a variety of issues including anxiety, depression, social anxiety, adhd, extreme states, bipolar disorder, addiction and sleep disorders.
(503) 436-6930 View (503) 436-6930
Photo of undefined - Gil Winkelman ND, ND, MA
Gil Winkelman ND
ND, MA
Verified Verified
Portland, OR 97210  (Online Only)
His primary interests are in Autism/ASD/Asperger's, OCD, ADD/ADHD, schizophrenia, migraines and bipolar disorders.
Dr Winkelman's focus is on understanding patients personal traits and health history to customize treatments that have the maximum possible impact. With a focus on neurological (brain) health, he uses a combination of neurofeedback, Walsh Protocol, and other natural treatments to help patients with a variety of conditions including, but not limited to: migraines, digestive disorders, depression, anxiety, Aspergers/Autism, OCD, ADD/ADHD, and Radical Attachment Disorder. Dr. Winkelman was trained in Neurofeedback by BCIA certified practitioners and utilizes the most up-to-date equipment in his practice. He has worked with veterans.
His primary interests are in Autism/ASD/Asperger's, OCD, ADD/ADHD, schizophrenia, migraines and bipolar disorders.
Dr Winkelman's focus is on understanding patients personal traits and health history to customize treatments that have the maximum possible impact. With a focus on neurological (brain) health, he uses a combination of neurofeedback, Walsh Protocol, and other natural treatments to help patients with a variety of conditions including, but not limited to: migraines, digestive disorders, depression, anxiety, Aspergers/Autism, OCD, ADD/ADHD, and Radical Attachment Disorder. Dr. Winkelman was trained in Neurofeedback by BCIA certified practitioners and utilizes the most up-to-date equipment in his practice. He has worked with veterans.
(503) 451-6760 View (503) 451-6760
Photo of Nicole Casthely, MSW, CSWA
Nicole Casthely
Clinical Social Work Associate, MSW, CSWA
Verified Verified
Portland, OR 97086  (Online Only)
Hi, I’m Nicole. I’m a therapist who works with teens and adults experiencing depression, anxiety, and trauma. I also work with members of the LGTBQIA+ and BIPOC communities. My other treatment focuses are bipolar disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), grief, relationship issues, and family conflicts. I am excited to provide you with individualized sessions specific to your current concerns.
Hi, I’m Nicole. I’m a therapist who works with teens and adults experiencing depression, anxiety, and trauma. I also work with members of the LGTBQIA+ and BIPOC communities. My other treatment focuses are bipolar disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), grief, relationship issues, and family conflicts. I am excited to provide you with individualized sessions specific to your current concerns.
(503) 832-4924 View (503) 832-4924
Photo of Dr. Dianna Harris (Accepting New Clients), PsyD, PMHNP, Psychologist
Dr. Dianna Harris (Accepting New Clients)
Psychologist, PsyD, PMHNP
Verified Verified
Portland, OR 97229
I have successfully helped people reduce anxiety and depression that has only partially been helped through therapy by adding psychiatric medication that is targeted to treat worry, panic, OCD, depression and bipolar symptoms.
Accepting NEW Clients (ages 18-65) as of 6/17/24 for Medication Management (I am not taking clients for therapy). Appointments are available in 2 weeks. Complete the Patient Inquiry Form on my website. You will receive a response the same or next day. My practice is primarily composed of adults struggling with anxiety and depression. I find that people reach out to treatment when excessive worry, low motivation, and negative thinking can lead to feeling less confident in their work, behind on tasks at home, and impacting their relationships. I don't treat ADHD and I don't prescribe controlled substances, such as Xanax for anxiety.
I have successfully helped people reduce anxiety and depression that has only partially been helped through therapy by adding psychiatric medication that is targeted to treat worry, panic, OCD, depression and bipolar symptoms.
Accepting NEW Clients (ages 18-65) as of 6/17/24 for Medication Management (I am not taking clients for therapy). Appointments are available in 2 weeks. Complete the Patient Inquiry Form on my website. You will receive a response the same or next day. My practice is primarily composed of adults struggling with anxiety and depression. I find that people reach out to treatment when excessive worry, low motivation, and negative thinking can lead to feeling less confident in their work, behind on tasks at home, and impacting their relationships. I don't treat ADHD and I don't prescribe controlled substances, such as Xanax for anxiety.
(971) 606-4749 View (971) 606-4749
Photo of Alex Perez, LCSW, Clinical Social Work/Therapist
Alex Perez
Clinical Social Work/Therapist, LCSW
Verified Verified
Portland, OR 97232
Waitlist for new clients
I specialize in issues important to teenagers and young adults/families, including issues related to family dynamics, depression, anxiety, bipolar/schizophrenia, substance abuse concerns, transracial adoptions, grief, LGBTQ dynamics, racial identity, gender transitioning process, and abandonment trauma. My relational approach to therapy can help you gain awareness of your road blocks and provide you with the tools (skills/coping strategies) you have for your own growth.
I specialize in issues important to teenagers and young adults/families, including issues related to family dynamics, depression, anxiety, bipolar/schizophrenia, substance abuse concerns, transracial adoptions, grief, LGBTQ dynamics, racial identity, gender transitioning process, and abandonment trauma. My relational approach to therapy can help you gain awareness of your road blocks and provide you with the tools (skills/coping strategies) you have for your own growth.
(503) 433-8452 View (503) 433-8452
Photo of Suzanne Manser, PhD, Psychologist
Suzanne Manser
Psychologist, PhD
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Portland, OR 97213
Waitlist for new clients
I am a licensed psychologist with strong specialties in treating folks with eating disorders and anxiety. I also have extensive experience working with people with depression, bipolar disorder, and relationship concerns. I am a compassionate, direct therapist. I work collaboratively with my patients to set and achieve their goals. These goals often include increased self-acceptance, as well as changes in mood, thought patterns, and behaviors. I am licensed in Oregon and California and welcome patients from both states.
I am a licensed psychologist with strong specialties in treating folks with eating disorders and anxiety. I also have extensive experience working with people with depression, bipolar disorder, and relationship concerns. I am a compassionate, direct therapist. I work collaboratively with my patients to set and achieve their goals. These goals often include increased self-acceptance, as well as changes in mood, thought patterns, and behaviors. I am licensed in Oregon and California and welcome patients from both states.
(503) 236-4343 x5 View (503) 236-4343 x5
Photo of Evan Egener, MA, LPC, Licensed Professional Counselor
Evan Egener
Licensed Professional Counselor, MA, LPC
Verified Verified
2 Endorsed
Portland, OR 97215
I provide a nonjudgmental space for you to heal and grow. My practice is evidence-based and includes a variety of focuses. I have specific experience with individuals working in tech, healthcare providers, and legal professionals. Neurodivergence, autism, and associated relational challenges are areas where I have advanced training. I specialize in anxiety, ADHD, trauma, bipolar, depression, substance use disorders, parenting challenges, and relationship issues. My practice is LGBTQIA+ affirming, and I specialize in gender and sexual diversity.
I provide a nonjudgmental space for you to heal and grow. My practice is evidence-based and includes a variety of focuses. I have specific experience with individuals working in tech, healthcare providers, and legal professionals. Neurodivergence, autism, and associated relational challenges are areas where I have advanced training. I specialize in anxiety, ADHD, trauma, bipolar, depression, substance use disorders, parenting challenges, and relationship issues. My practice is LGBTQIA+ affirming, and I specialize in gender and sexual diversity.
(971) 206-6404 View (971) 206-6404
Photo of Robert Socherman, PhD, Psychologist
Robert Socherman
Psychologist, PhD
Verified Verified
Portland, OR 97227
The focus of my practice is working with people with mood disorders, usually defined as depression or bipolar disorder as well as anxiety disorders.
I think of my approach to helping people as a collaborative and educational one. Most people who come in for therapy are wanting to make a change in their lives but are struggling in some manor. I feel that the best way to implement change is through one's thoughts (cognitions), feelings, and behaviors-this kind of approach is known as Cognitive-Behavioral therapy (CBT). A person needs to welcome the challenges and opportunities in his or her life with a clear and calm mind - These are the cognitive and behavioral aspects of CBT.
The focus of my practice is working with people with mood disorders, usually defined as depression or bipolar disorder as well as anxiety disorders.
I think of my approach to helping people as a collaborative and educational one. Most people who come in for therapy are wanting to make a change in their lives but are struggling in some manor. I feel that the best way to implement change is through one's thoughts (cognitions), feelings, and behaviors-this kind of approach is known as Cognitive-Behavioral therapy (CBT). A person needs to welcome the challenges and opportunities in his or her life with a clear and calm mind - These are the cognitive and behavioral aspects of CBT.
(503) 218-3970 View (503) 218-3970
Photo of Charmaine Read, LCSW, Clinical Social Work/Therapist
Charmaine Read
Clinical Social Work/Therapist, LCSW
Verified Verified
Portland, OR 97212  (Online Only)
NOW Accepting new clients! I believe that a good fit and feeling confident with your therapist is the first step in reaching your therapeutic goals. Since 2011, I have worked with a wide array of clients and I have specific experience working with people who experience depression, anxiety, Bipolar, life transitions, stress, self-esteem challenges, women’s issues, trauma, and more. Since everyone is different, I utilize a variety of approaches to help people attain the life they desire and deserve. These include but are not limited to CBT, DBT, EMDR, mindfulness, and solution focused therapy.
NOW Accepting new clients! I believe that a good fit and feeling confident with your therapist is the first step in reaching your therapeutic goals. Since 2011, I have worked with a wide array of clients and I have specific experience working with people who experience depression, anxiety, Bipolar, life transitions, stress, self-esteem challenges, women’s issues, trauma, and more. Since everyone is different, I utilize a variety of approaches to help people attain the life they desire and deserve. These include but are not limited to CBT, DBT, EMDR, mindfulness, and solution focused therapy.
(503) 782-5165 View (503) 782-5165
Photo of Noel Sicat, LCSW, Clinical Social Work/Therapist
Noel Sicat
Clinical Social Work/Therapist, LCSW
Verified Verified
Portland, OR 97211  (Online Only)
I have had experience in working with clients who struggle with symptoms of Depression, Anxiety, PTSD, Bipolar disorder, psychosis, personality disorders and other mood disorders and symptoms.
Hi! My name is Noël, and I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the state of Oregon, with over a decade of experience in a variety of settings. I completed my MSW at Loma Linda University and a Social Work Fellowship at Yale University. I want to help you with whatever situation you are facing. We all need support sometimes, and I know that taking these first steps to finding the help you need are some of the hardest. Everyone deserves to be truly heard and their life journey to be respected.
I have had experience in working with clients who struggle with symptoms of Depression, Anxiety, PTSD, Bipolar disorder, psychosis, personality disorders and other mood disorders and symptoms.
Hi! My name is Noël, and I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the state of Oregon, with over a decade of experience in a variety of settings. I completed my MSW at Loma Linda University and a Social Work Fellowship at Yale University. I want to help you with whatever situation you are facing. We all need support sometimes, and I know that taking these first steps to finding the help you need are some of the hardest. Everyone deserves to be truly heard and their life journey to be respected.
(971) 545-8015 View (971) 545-8015
Photo of Lacey Burnett, LCSW, Clinical Social Work/Therapist
Lacey Burnett
Clinical Social Work/Therapist, LCSW
Verified Verified
2 Endorsed
Portland, OR 97219  (Online Only)
I have experience in addressing a wide range of concerns and diagnoses, including anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, relationship issues, chronic health struggles, self-esteem, stress management, and ADHD. My goal is to empower my clients with tools and insights that can facilitate positive change and enhance their overall quality of life.
I have experience in addressing a wide range of concerns and diagnoses, including anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, relationship issues, chronic health struggles, self-esteem, stress management, and ADHD. My goal is to empower my clients with tools and insights that can facilitate positive change and enhance their overall quality of life.
(503) 739-9366 View (503) 739-9366
Photo of Cassandra Gardner, LPC, Licensed Professional Counselor
Cassandra Gardner
Licensed Professional Counselor, LPC
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Portland, OR 97212  (Online Only)
When working with clients I prioritize the therapeutic relationship. We become a team working toward your goals, and I place significant value on honesty, authenticity, humor, compassion, validation, and accountability into our work together. Since starting my counseling practice I have worked with people of all ages and backgrounds experiencing various challenges including but not limited to anxiety, depression, OCD, trauma, gender dysphoria, grief, interpersonal issues, life transitions, adoption, self-esteem, bipolar II disorder, and more.
When working with clients I prioritize the therapeutic relationship. We become a team working toward your goals, and I place significant value on honesty, authenticity, humor, compassion, validation, and accountability into our work together. Since starting my counseling practice I have worked with people of all ages and backgrounds experiencing various challenges including but not limited to anxiety, depression, OCD, trauma, gender dysphoria, grief, interpersonal issues, life transitions, adoption, self-esteem, bipolar II disorder, and more.
(503) 966-8721 View (503) 966-8721
Photo of Lee Scher, MA, LPC, Licensed Professional Counselor
Lee Scher
Licensed Professional Counselor, MA, LPC
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Portland, OR 97215
I specialize in working with people affected by relational trauma and neurodivergence (especially late-diagnosed autistic and bipolar II) folks. My approach is client-centered, which means I focus on developing a relationship with you based on warmth, respect, curiosity, and genuineness. I also incorporate Jungian psychology, Buddhist psychology and mindfulness into my work. If you're curious to learn more, please visit my website or call me to set up a free consultation or first session.
I specialize in working with people affected by relational trauma and neurodivergence (especially late-diagnosed autistic and bipolar II) folks. My approach is client-centered, which means I focus on developing a relationship with you based on warmth, respect, curiosity, and genuineness. I also incorporate Jungian psychology, Buddhist psychology and mindfulness into my work. If you're curious to learn more, please visit my website or call me to set up a free consultation or first session.
(971) 252-7872 View (971) 252-7872
Photo of Dr. Dianna Harris (Accepting New Clients), PsyD, PMHNP, Psychologist
Dr. Dianna Harris (Accepting New Clients)
Psychologist, PsyD, PMHNP
Verified Verified
Portland, OR 97219
I have successfully helped people reduce anxiety and depression that has only partially been helped through therapy by adding psychiatric medication that is targeted to treat worry, panic, OCD, depression and bipolar symptoms.
Accepting NEW Clients (ages 18-65) as of 6/17/24 for Medication Management (I am not taking clients for therapy). Appointments are available in 2 weeks. Complete the Patient Inquiry Form on my website. You will receive a response the same or next day. My practice is primarily composed of adults struggling with anxiety and depression. I find that people reach out to treatment when excessive worry, low motivation, and negative thinking can lead to feeling less confident in their work, behind on tasks at home, and impacting their relationships. I don't treat ADHD and I don't prescribe controlled substances, such as Xanax for anxiety.
I have successfully helped people reduce anxiety and depression that has only partially been helped through therapy by adding psychiatric medication that is targeted to treat worry, panic, OCD, depression and bipolar symptoms.
Accepting NEW Clients (ages 18-65) as of 6/17/24 for Medication Management (I am not taking clients for therapy). Appointments are available in 2 weeks. Complete the Patient Inquiry Form on my website. You will receive a response the same or next day. My practice is primarily composed of adults struggling with anxiety and depression. I find that people reach out to treatment when excessive worry, low motivation, and negative thinking can lead to feeling less confident in their work, behind on tasks at home, and impacting their relationships. I don't treat ADHD and I don't prescribe controlled substances, such as Xanax for anxiety.
(503) 476-9855 View (503) 476-9855
Photo of Laurie Fieldman, LCSW, Clinical Social Work/Therapist
Laurie Fieldman
Clinical Social Work/Therapist, LCSW
Verified Verified
Portland, OR 97214  (Online Only)
I have 26 years experience as an LCSW working with all sorts of concerns such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, trauma, bipolar disorder, ADHD, grief, and self-esteem struggles.
If you are looking for an experienced, warm and inviting therapist to support you, I welcome people of all backgrounds with all sorts of issues. In the early years of my 26-year career as an LCSW, I founded, developed, and operated a camp for grieving children. I've also worked extensively with terminal illness and end of life issues and everything in between. I also have expertise with and welcome the LBGTQ+ community, parenting, family issues, and am ready to support you with an open, non-judgmental space for healing.
I have 26 years experience as an LCSW working with all sorts of concerns such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, trauma, bipolar disorder, ADHD, grief, and self-esteem struggles.
If you are looking for an experienced, warm and inviting therapist to support you, I welcome people of all backgrounds with all sorts of issues. In the early years of my 26-year career as an LCSW, I founded, developed, and operated a camp for grieving children. I've also worked extensively with terminal illness and end of life issues and everything in between. I also have expertise with and welcome the LBGTQ+ community, parenting, family issues, and am ready to support you with an open, non-judgmental space for healing.
(503) 855-0494 View (503) 855-0494
Photo of Ramzy Darwish, Ramzy Darwish, LCSW, Clinical Social Work/Therapist
Ramzy Darwish
Clinical Social Work/Therapist, Ramzy Darwish, LCSW
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Portland, OR 97202
I have had a great deal of experience working with very different people from very different backgrounds, and I truly enjoy getting to know and work with people of all types. I currently work with adults suffering from mental illness, and I am very comfortable helping others through their unique symptoms of Major Depression, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Social Anxiety, Bipolar Disorder (I & II), as well as other conditions. However, I also have extensive experience assisting people in simply moving towards their goals, improving their responses to (internal and external) conflict and building self-esteem to move forward in life.
I have had a great deal of experience working with very different people from very different backgrounds, and I truly enjoy getting to know and work with people of all types. I currently work with adults suffering from mental illness, and I am very comfortable helping others through their unique symptoms of Major Depression, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Social Anxiety, Bipolar Disorder (I & II), as well as other conditions. However, I also have extensive experience assisting people in simply moving towards their goals, improving their responses to (internal and external) conflict and building self-esteem to move forward in life.
(971) 306-9872 View (971) 306-9872
Bipolar Disorder Therapists

What is the most successful approach to treating bipolar disorder?

Living with bipolar disorder can be challenging, and a number of therapies have been found effective in providing support to patients as they gain the skills to understand and manage the disorder. Family-focused therapy is often helpful for children and teens (the majority of cases develop before age 19); it aims to minimize mood cycling by improving family communication and reducing conflict. It also helps young people navigate the developmental challenges the disorder can create. Cognitive and behavioral therapy (CBT) and variants such as Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)help patients manage the thoughts and feelings that influence bipolar mood swings as well as develop specific behavioral strategies to counteract them.

What happens in therapy for bipolar disorder?

Because the patterns of mood switching and its triggers differ for each person and can change over time, mood tracking or monitoring becomes a basic way patients learn about the nature of their condition. One of the most common features of therapy is finding a workable method of mood monitoring, in which patients track their daily activities and rate their moods, then use the findings to adjust routines accordingly. Patients learn ways of handling the many stresses that arise in life so that they do not trigger mood swings.

What kinds of problems does therapy help with?

Like many other mental health disorders, BPD is heavily influenced by stress; therapy provides skills for coping with stressors of all kinds. Therapy is extremely important for helping individuals identify the situations that may trigger mood switching, so that mood swings can be prevented. Therapy may especially target recognition of the early stages of mood change so that they can be managed. In addition, therapy helps patients deal with the significant amount of turbulence the disorder can create in relationships and in work life.

What is the goal of therapy for bipolar disorder?

Therapy helps patients set up their lives to maintain stability so that their mood isn’t constantly threatened by daily events. Perhaps the first task of therapy is to educate people about the nature of the disorder. At the same time, a primary goal of therapy is to enhance adherence to drug treatment. Extended periods of mood stability can prompt patients to discontinue medication, triggering relapse, while the early phases of manic episodes can feel so energizing that patients stop medication, ushering in full-blown mania and the altered self-perception that can lead to destructive behaviors. Another major goal of therapy is to understand one’s mood patterns so as to minimize both the frequency and intensity of mood cycling.