For many decades bipolar disorder was completely misunderstood and as a result mood stabilizers for bipolar disorder were not the same as the ones that we know today. Before this and other psychological disorders were properly understood bipolar disorder was treated in a number of ways that would be considered nearly barbaric today. Things like lobotomies, electroshock therapy and heavy doses of sedatives were to go to method of treating a manic episode and the psychosis that occasionally accompanies it. Thankfully, after much psychiatric research we now have a number of safe, effective and most importantly, humane options available for the treatment of bipolar disorder as well as other psychological disorders.
The Early Days
Before psychological disorders were well understood, religious reasons were given for a person’s strange behavior. A manic episode or psychosis was the result of demonic possession and a depressive episode was a person “feeling low”. Suicide rates among people with bipolar disorder is much higher than among the general population even today but it was even higher before modern medicine. In the age of enlightenment the idea of demonic possession was out and a new idea emerged; namely that there was something wrong with a person’s brain.
The obvious solution, of course, was to cut out the afflicted area of the brain, known as a lobotomy. Now we know that this is more akin to mutilation than anything. Another common solution which gained popularity in the early twentieth century was electroshock therapy, which is more akin to shuffling a deck of cards and hoping to come up with a better hand than a medical treatment. Finally, heavy sedatives like thorazine were tried before being abandoned for the modern mood stabilizers for bipolar disorder that we know today.
The Classic Among Mood Stabilizers for Bipolar Disorder
The oldest and even today most common of all the mood stabilizers for bipolar disorder is lithium. The reason is that lithium has been shown to be incredibly effective not just in managing the psychosis sometimes associated with bipolar disorder but it can actually help prevent manic episodes from occurring. Lithium has also helped drastically decrease the instances of suicide among bipolar patients which is another reason it remains one of the most widely prescribed mood stabilizers for bipolar disorder.
Modern Mood Stabilizers
As psychiatric professions began to recognize more and more variant of bipolar, new mood stabilizers for bipolar disorder began to be developed. Things like prescribing depakote for bipolar disorder that does not respond to lithium therapy has been used. In addition, other mood stabilizers for bipolar disorder such as Seroquel have been shown to be useful in treating bipolar disorder as well as the psychosis that accompanies it. These new modern mood stabilizers for bipolar disorder are a marked improvement over the barbaric practices doctor’s used as late as the early twentieth century. Thanks to their development a new generation of people with bipolar disorder are able to enjoy life without being subjected to cruel and inhumane treatments for their disorder. In this way the modern mood stabilizers for bipolar disorder have made life much more livable for people living with this psychological condition.