Stimulant drugs are a class of drugs that increase energy production in the body. These drugs, also known as “uppers,” are heavily abused due to their performance-enhancing and euphoric effects. Stimulant abusers typically feel increased energy and concentration. Stimulant drugs accelerate mental and physical processes, which increase brain dopamine levels, contributing to short-term positive effects. Although the short-term effects of stimulants can make users feel fantastic, long-term abuse of these drugs can have severe consequences, which is why anyone who abuses them should seek treatment as soon as possible.
Stimulant drugs come in two varieties: legal and illegal, and both are widely abused. Cocaine, methamphetamine, and prescription stimulants like Ritalin, Adderall, and Concerta are among the most commonly abused stimulants. Bipolar disorder is a severe mental health condition characterized by intense mood swings. The bipolar disorder patient regularly struggles to avoid the depressive episodes and reach the ebullient manic episodes they crave for stimulant drugs.
Many bipolar patients report feeling exuberant, inventive, and unstoppable during manic phases.
It’s also not unusual for a bipolar disorder patient to try to mimic these mania symptoms by using stimulant drugs like cocaine, crack, and crystal meth, which produces similar effects, such as:
- Extra stamina
- Sociability has improved
- intense concentration
- Empowerment feelings
Usually, this results in a stimulant addiction and an improvement in the effects of stimulant drugs. Patients report feeling surly and paranoid while high after taking the medication on a long-term basis rather than feeling relaxed.It has also been found that when major depression occurs, it is much more severe and lasts longer than depression induced by stimulant drugs. Owing to the combination of collapsing after cocaine or opioid stimulant binge and bipolar disorder, many patients report feeling suicidal. So, if your loved one suffers from bipolar disorder and addiction, how do you approach the issue head-on?
Treatments for Bipolar Disorder Which Are Recommended
- Mood stabilizers are one of the most widely used therapies for Bipolar Disorder. These stimulant drugs help control the mood swings that come with Bipolar Disorder. Lithium and valproic acid are two examples.
- Antipsychotics are drugs that are used to treat mental illnesses. Antipsychotic drugs might be used separately or in conjunction with mood stabilizers in some cases. Risperidone, olanzapine, and lurasidone are some examples.
- Antidepressants are medications that are used to treat depression. The use of antidepressants for depression is fairly common, as are stimulant drugs occasionally. However, they can often trigger or exacerbate a psychotic episode.
- Therapeutic care. In therapy, you will recognize whether you are going through a period of mania or depression, which may necessitate stimulant drugs. It may also help identify problematic thoughts or habits and alter them.
- Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is a form of electroconvulsive (ECT). Electrical impulses are used to activate the brain in ECT. It can be used in the event of a severe episode of mania or depression or when other therapies such as antidepressants and therapy have failed.
- Changes in the way of life. It’s also important that you change your everyday lifestyle to better manage the symptoms of stimulant drugs. Daily exercise, maintaining daily habits, and monitoring your mood changes are only a few examples.
The Problem of Drug Abuse
It may seem rational to resolve opioid abuse first and then concentrate on bipolar disorder care. Since the signs of bipolar disorder are always the primary concern, many families believe that the drug problem is just another symptom.
Commonly Abused Drugs by Bipolar Patients
- Prescription stimulant drugs (e.g., Adderall)
- Crystal meth
Although this may be true in some cases, drug and alcohol cravings are almost always linked to bipolar symptoms and stimulant drugs. That is, when a patient’s mood starts to deteriorate, they crave cocaine or stimulant prescription medications such as Adderall. Though this is true in some cases, drug and alcohol cravings are often linked to bipolar symptoms. Patients with low moods seek stimulant drugs medication, such as Adderall, or cocaine when their moods begin to deteriorate.If the woman’s addiction is not addressed concurrently, she may find it nearly impossible to stop taking stimulant drugs during a depressive episode. Continued drug and alcohol abuse would obliterate any chance of making gains in bipolar disorder care. Similarly, untreated bipolar disorder symptoms will sabotage opioid addiction treatment efforts. To solve both of those issues in the stimulant drugs, comprehensive therapy is necessary to resolve them both.
Is Stimulant Abuse a Factor in Bipolar Disorder?
There is no evidence that stimulant use contributes to bipolar disorder though it does have some association with symptoms. This is a significant difference from stimulant drugs. The term Stimulant-induced Bipolar Disorder comes from the fact that it results from excessive use of stimulants stimulant drugs, which will disappear if the individual stops using stimulant drugs. It’s important to remember that amphetamine medications aren’t commonly used in bipolar disorder prescription treatment because they’re stimulants that may exacerbate symptoms. Amphetamines used by people with (bipolar disorder) can range from legal prescription drugs to illegal substances.
An Individual Suffering from Bipolar Disorder Might Be Able to Obtain Prescription Stimulants Such As:
- Desoxyn methamphetamine)
- Vyvanse lisdexamfetamine
- Dexedrine dextroamphetamine
- Adderall (levoamphetamine and dextroamphetamine)
Illegal Stimulants Include:
Do Stimulants Have an Effect on Bipolar Symptoms?
Unquestionably. In addition to causing mania in people with or without bipolar disorder, amphetamines can intensify mania in people who use stimulant drugs. Stimulant-induced Bipolar Disorder occurs when a stimulant causes mania symptoms in individuals who do not have Bipolar Disorder. Manic symptoms are common in amphetamine addiction. After intensive treatment of existing opioid use disorder, manic symptoms usually disappear. Individuals diagnosed with bipolar disorder, which is not stimulant-induced, find it challenging to manage the underlying disease with co-occurring stimulant drugs abuse.
Side Effects and Downsides of Using Stimulants to Treat Bipolar Disorder
There Are Some Drawbacks of Using Adderall to Treat Bipolar Disorder Symptoms. There Are Some of Them:
- Manic Episodes Are a Possibility. Taking stimulants like Adderall during an episode of depression can make you more likely to have a psychotic episode. According to a 2008 survey, 40 percent of people taking stimulants for bipolar disorder reported stimulant-associated mania.
- Tolerance Is a Virtue. Tolerance can grow if Adderall is used for a prolonged period. A person can need higher Adderall doses to experience its effects in these cases. This could put you at risk for serious side effects or an overdose.
- Addiction Is a Severe Problem. Adderall has a high risk of abuse and addiction if misused.
Stimulant Use and Addiction Treatment
Abuse of any stimulant over time can lead to a drug use disorder. Those addicted to stimulant drugs are recommended to seek professional help within six months.
Medical detox is generally prescribed for people that have been abusing stimulants for a long time, are polysubstance abusers, or have co-occurring disorders (when another mental health disorder occurs alongside the addiction). A professional facility treats clients around the clock, removing violent substances from their bodies with stimulant drugs. If complications occur, medical professionals will be able to respond rapidly. To make the withdrawal process as easy as possible, drugs such as anti-anxiety or anti-nausea medications can be used to treat specific withdrawal symptoms. Supportive treatment is often given inadequate nutrition, hydration, and motivation.
Addiction rehabilitation needs to detoxify the full-body, but the detox process cannot be used as a standalone intervention with stimulant drugs. It must be followed up with an entire course of treatment. Behavioral treatments such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) have had a lot of success in treating cocaine addiction. This approach to short-term care entails recognizing thinking patterns that contribute to drug addiction and then altering them. It is, therefore, no surprise that people’s attitudes towards stimulant drugs have changed as a consequence.
When Using Cocaine or Other Stimulants, Clients Learn to Choose Healthy Coping Strategies.
Contingency Management, a reward-based therapy, is effective in the treatment of stimulant addiction. For meeting such goals, such as a certain number of days sober or attending a certain number of counseling sessions, clients are offered incentives, such as coupons for events or prizes.
The Matrix Model is often widely applied to stimulant addiction treatment. It is a model in which the client and therapist work together to improve the client’s behavior and increase that person’s self-esteem with stimulant drugs. Clients gain confidence with time, and eventually, they learn that they can support themselves better with stimulant drugs with the right resources. Like in every type of drug treatment, care should be tailored to the client’s specific needs. In terms of rehabilitation, a single-size-fits-all program doesn’t work for everyone, but those addicted to stimulant drugs should look for a program that will address their individual needs.
How to Stage an Intervention for Your Loved One
Families who have a loved one diagnosed with a severe mental illness such as bipolar disorder and addiction face particular challenges in assisting them in receiving care. Most people do not want to skip their medication, and less than half avoid stimulant drugs used in bipolar treatment. Since some patients like manic times, they would rather go through the bad times than seek balance and prevent the peaks from both ends of stimulant drugs.Many families struggle with this because they are more realistic regarding the harm that the addicted person is doing to herself by taking stimulant drugs. In some instances, a structured intervention for the dependent person must clarify that therapy will help her regain control of her life. If she refuses to accept help, her family will no longer support her. You can get the assistance you need to stage a successful intervention for a loved one right now. Call us right now at 615-490-9376 to see if we can help you with matters concerning stimulant drugs and much more.
Ben Lesser is one of the most sought-after experts in health, fitness and medicine. His articles impress with unique research work as well as field-tested skills. He is a freelance medical writer specializing in creating content to improve public awareness of health topics. We are honored to have Ben writing exclusively for Dualdiagnosis.org.