1- Learn everything you need to know about bipolar disorder:
When a child has bipolar disorder, family support is important. The best way to give this support is to learn about the illness.
– Bipolar disorder is characterized by mood swings from which the child moves into manic or depressive phases. During a manic phase, the child will be very boisterous, energetic, and happy, but also explosive. He or she is likely to sleep poorly, have difficulty concentrating, and exhibit dangerous behaviors. During the depressive phase, the child may be quiet, withdrawn, and cry a lot. He or she will also feel guilty, worthless, and show little interest in activities. He or she will complain of pain. children usually have difficulty in expressing feelings of sadness and hopelessness.
– Bipolar disorder comes in many forms. Bipolar I disorder is usually the most intense disorder with manic episodes that can last up to six days. Bipolar II disorder involves shorter, more intense phases of mania. Other milder forms of bipolar disorder do not fit into either category. When your child is diagnosed with bipolar disorder, a psychiatrist will explain which category it falls into and you can ask questions.
– The best way to learn more about your child’s disorder is to discuss it with your child’s doctor or psychiatrist. He or she will recommend reading material that can teach you how to manage the moods of a child with bipolar disorder.
2- Observe your child’s moods and behaviors:
Start taking notes every day about your child’s behavior. What was his or her mood today? What events triggered his mood? How did he or she sleep? What medications did he or she take? These are important parts of his disorder. This will help you see the progress he or she is making and whether any negative effects appear after starting a new therapy or treatment. Share your observations with doctors and psychiatrists to modify your child’s treatment for better results.
3- Talk with your child’s teachers:
Teachers of your child’ should be aware of the disorder s/he has. Children with bipolar disorder will have difficulty concentrating at school and interacting with others. Therefore, their teachers need to know how to help them.
– Take time each school year to discuss this problem with teachers. Even though people are beginning to understand more and more about mental illness, some people are still confused or skeptical. Try to explain that bipolar disorder is a biological illness, like diabetes, and that your child has special needs.
– Be as transparent as possible. Make a list of things the teacher needs to consider. For example, your child may need more time for a check-up. Be aware, however, that the teacher may not be able to accommodate all of your requests because of school rules. You may need to discuss specific needs with someone higher up in the hierarchy, such as the principal, to ensure that your child gets what he or she needs.
– Ask the psychiatrist of your child or their doctor to write a note. By presenting a note with some authority that explains the problem, you will help the teacher understand it better. Some schools may even require a note from a psychiatrist or doctor if you ask for special accommodations
4- Help your child keep track of appointments and medications:
Your child needs help to manage his disorder. Help them by explaining the benefits of therapy and medication. Remind your child to take his or her medication and make sure they attend appointments on time. Discuss his/her condition throughout treatment and always explain that there is nothing shameful about having and curing a mental illness.