Very low lows, lasting longer than usual, shortanic highs, sleep one night and not the next, mentally feel terrible
Is your Bipolar diagnoses I or II? I have Bipolar Disorder II and manage largely by lifestyle choices; but here are the medications which help me. For sleep I take 25mg Seroquel each night. When I wake at night and begin ruminating I take 0.25mg Klonipin (prescribed "up to 3x daily as needed"). This happens 1-2 times weekly except during very stressful times when I might take it 3-4 nights weekly. During hard-to-manage manic episodes I may take 1 or 2 doses (again o.25mg) during the day.
I am extremely sensitive to all medications, so my philosophy is to take as little as possible. I exercise and in general follow a healthy diet. I meditate (alas, infrequently) but those breathing exercises are my go-to when things get rough. Here are some of my sleep management techniques: when I wake at night, I do not look at the clock. If I find I am ruminating I take the Klonopin. If I lie there for what feels like more than 20 to 30 minutes, I turn on the light and read, or I might get up and eat a light snack. (I read recently that some cultures sleep in two shifts--sometimes that seems like what I am doing.) I try not to count hours of sleep as I think that gets me fixated on the "problem." The best to you--I know it's tough.
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