Can Bipolar II Disorder be cured? Well, the short answer is no, unfortunately. There are no current treatments in the medical community that can successfully alter the neural pathways of the brain to effectively prevent hypomaniac or depressive episodes in those people that have been diagnosed with Bipolar II. Physicians are hoping that, with advances in stem cell research, there may be away to somehow graft stem cells in a manner that cures the mental illness. To date, there are no outright cures to bipolar II.
Fortunately, the available treatments for the disorder are so effective that they essentially “cure” the symptoms of bipolar II disorder. Depending on the specific diagnosis, a patient may be prescribed a course of mood stabilizers, anti-depressants, anti-psychotics, anti-convulsants, or psychotherapy and cognitive behavioral therapy. In most cases, a combination of the previously mentioned medications is used to find an optimal level that allows the bipolar II patient to lead a successful life going forward. Most of these treatments will need to be taken over the lifetime of the patient. Therapy sessions and medication quantities may be able to be decreased over time as the person suffering from the mental illness is better able to handle certain situations on their own. However, since there is no current cure for bipolar II disorder, medication will be required at all times.
Can Bipolar Disorder Be Cured?
The most common prescribed medication for Bipolar II disorder is Lithium. It is the most widely used and widely studied medication for the disorder. Lithium is able to effectively reduce the occurrences and severity of hypomania episodes within patients. It has also been proven that it helps to relieve bipolar depression. Lithium helps to prevent the risk of suicide in patients and can prevent potential future hypomanic episodes. Because of this, the drug is often prescribed for long periods of time as a maintenance therapy.
Psychotherapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy are almost always prescribed to patients with Bipolar II disorder. These therapies are basically “talk therapies” in which the patient will meet with a psychologist on a regular basis to discuss their emotions, feelings, or thought processes. These sessions are used to identify how the person is processing different events in their lives. Once a firm understanding of the patient has been established, the psychologist can help the person to reprocess any type of traumatic memories or feelings they may be having and present them with mental tools that they can use to potentially avoid traumatic events in the future. The use of psychotherapy and cognitive behavioral therapy has been proven to prevent suicide, reduce occurrences of hypomania and depression episodes, and teach patients how to deal with certain emotional situations that may have been overwhelming previously. These therapy sessions are critical in the treatment of someone with bipolar II disorder.
Unfortunately, bipolar disorder cannot be cured. Medical science has not yet come up with a way to alter the brain of the suffering person permanently. But, thanks to advances in medication and psychotherapy, someone with bipolar II disorder can live a long and functional lifestyle.