heyy, do you subscribe any medications to your patients? What is your success rate?

I am a student and I have bipolar disorder (not professionally diagnosed). I don’t remember the last time I have slept more than 3 hours and my grades have dropped drastically (failed a lot of classes) and if I don’t work my butt off this semester I am not going to graduate and I don’t think I will be able to deal with that. I just want to get better or at least have hope that I will get out of this bubble. I am so tired and would appreciate any kind of help. I really do need therapy and the only thing that is stopping me is money, which I am working on. So please, I would appreciate any kind of help.
Asked by mica

Hi Mica,

I am a licensed psychotherapist. We are not trained to be able to prescribe medications. Only doctors or nurse practitioners are licensed to do that. It might be helpful to look into the community mental health agency in your county. These agencies are in every county in the country and receive both state and federal funding to support everyone in the area, regardless of ability to pay. Often their case managers or billing offices will help you to pay on a sliding fee, or obtain low cost insurance, or Medicaid (insurance for low income folks). 

At community mental health agencies the therapists, case managers, and prescribers provide a team approach, which I've found is very helpful in treating bipolar disorder.

You didn't mention where you go to school. If you are in high school, please seek support from your guidance counselors around credit recovery for your grades, and counseling support. If you're in college, even online college, please look into student supports through your school's website. I'm hearing that some colleges are providing BetterHelp as part of their supports to students, especially in this pandemic year. If you're struggling with a mental health condition, 504 Plans are available to provide accommodations during challenging periods. Your mental health provider will need to write a letter to document need, so this is again a good reason to build a relationship with a local provider, whether in the community or on campus.

There are some things you might be able to do yourself, and resources available online, although medication often plays a big role in managing bipolar disorder.

First to consider would be a solid sleep routine. We humans require a daily routine to help our bodies wind down for a good night's sleep. Electronics at night is a big culprit. Put them all outside your bedroom at sleep time. Doing some stretching exercises before bed, or taking a hot shower, relaxes muscles and relieves tension for sleep. Be good to yourself at night, and settle in for a restful sleep. There are some apps, some free, that will help you to sleep at night. Look around for apps that can help you to monitor moods too. This can be helpful in providing the support you may need at times. Reach out to family and friends you trust who can support you as well. We all need each other to get through our daily challenges!

I hope this has been helpful! I'm wishing you the best as you move forward in managing your wellness. Practicing various strategies will take time and commitment, but the positive results will definitely be worth your time.