Beach House Center for Recovery offers comprehensive treatment programs for people struggling with bipolar and substance use disorders. With dedicated addiction specialists, medical clinicians, and psychiatric providers, we deliver ongoing support to patients seeking freedom from addiction.

People with unmanaged mental health issues are at high risk for developing substance use disorders. Bipolar disorder is a particularly challenging concern, requiring dedicated clinical support to address successfully.

Bipolar disorder and substance use are often intertwined. According to data from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), between 30% and 50% of people diagnosed with bipolar disorder could develop a co-occurring substance use disorder at some stage.

What is bipolar disorder?

Bipolar disorder is a neurological condition that causes extreme and sometimes lengthy mood shifts. While there are genetic and environmental elements that contribute to the onset of bipolar disorder, there is no consensus about the specific causes.

Bipolar mood shifts fall into the following categories:

  • Hypomanic Episodes: Significant bursts of energy, either euphoria or hostility, that might last for approximately four days.
  • Manic Episodes: Major bursts of elation or hostility – generally more significant than hypomanic episodes – that can last for a week or longer. Manic episode behaviors can lead to sleeplessness, agitation, and delusions that might require hospitalization.
  • Major Depressive Episodes: Major depressive episodes are periods of severe disinterest lasting at least two weeks. People experiencing major depressive episodes might not leave their homes, fail to complete normal daily work or school tasks, struggle with concentration, or have thoughts of suicide or death.
  • Mixed Episodes: Periods of hypomanic, manic, and major depressive behaviors.

Bipolar disorder can be a difficult condition to diagnose accurately. When the symptoms are mistaken for clinical depression, the treatments might cause an emergence of hypomanic or manic episodes. In some cases, misdiagnosed bipolar disorder can contribute to substance use disorder; when the treatments aren’t effective, patients might self-medicate to alleviate symptoms.

Why are bipolar and substance use disorders related?

A definitive link between bipolar and substance use disorders has not been established, though there is a strong correlation between the two conditions. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) suggests the following potential pathways:

Shared genetic components: The biological factors related to bipolar disorder might predict a person’s risk for developing an addiction to substances.

Disorders exacerbating each other: The negative effects of bipolar disorder might trigger substance misuse to alleviate symptoms.

Disorder-induced neurological susceptibility: The long-term desensitizing effects of unmanaged bipolar disorder might cause heightened vulnerability to addiction.

Compassionate Bipolar Disorder Treatment at Beach House Center for Recovery

Bipolar disorder treatment is a critical element in recovery from substance use disorder; without first addressing underlying mental health issues, it is impossible to achieve freedom from addiction.

Dual diagnosis treatment is the gold standard of care for people struggling with co-existing addiction and mental health disorders. At Beach House, our multi-disciplinary approach gives patients the tools to manage their conditions effectively.

Beach House Center for Recovery offers a safe and tranquil environment for addressing bipolar and substance use disorders. Our team of providers and clinicians offer in-depth expertise in treating co-occurring disorders with empathy and care.

For more information about our approach, please contact our compassionate and helpful admissions counselors today