Living with bipolar disorder
Bipolar disorder is not as uncommon as you may think. Millions of American adults are affected by bipolar disorder. A bipolar disorder diagnosis may be overwhelming at first; you may find it helpful to work with your health care provider and use these helpful tools.
Impact of Bipolar Disorder
- Bipolar disorder may make it harder to get along with others and have good relationships
- Divorce rates, for example, are almost 2 to 3 times higher for people with bipolar disorder than for people without it
- Holding down a job, completing an education, taking care of children, and managing money may also be more difficult
- Bipolar disorder may make drinking too much alcohol or abusing drugs more likely
- It may cause you to take risks that could cause harm to yourself
- The depressive symptoms, also called bipolar depression, can be extremely disruptive to a person's life
Healthy Routines—Positive First Step
- Get regular sleep. Do your best to go to sleep and wake up at the same time each day
- Eat regular meals and get regular exercise
- Reduce stress. People with bipolar disorder may find that an episode of depression or mania might start after they have been under more stress than usual
- Take medication regularly. If your health care professional has prescribed medication for you as part of your treatment plan, be sure to take it at the same time every day. Having a routine may make it easier to remember to take your medication as prescribed
- Get help for substance abuse, if needed. People with bipolar disorder may be more likely to use and abuse alcohol or other drugs. This can trigger episodes of illness or make your episodes last longer. If you think you may have a problem with drugs or alcohol, talk to your health care professional about options for dealing with these issues
- Track your progress. You may find it useful to keep a Mood Tracking Diary
Getting the Help You Need
Work with your health care professional to develop a plan for managing your bipolar disorder and to follow your treatment plan closely. Here are a few more resources that are designed to assist someone living with bipolar disorder.
- Helpful tools that may help you gain perspective, track your moods, and work with your health care professional
- Support and resources from organizations, advocacy groups, and support groups
Important Safety Information and Indications for Seroquel XR and Seroquel
Elderly patients with dementia-related psychosis (having lost touch with reality due to confusion and memory loss) treated with this type of medicine are at an increased risk of death, compared to placebo (sugar pill). Seroquel XR and Seroquel are not approved for treating these patients.
Antidepressants have increased the risk of suicidal thoughts and actions in some children, teenagers, and young adults. Patients of all ages starting treatment should be watched closely for worsening of depression, suicidal thoughts or actions, unusual changes in behavior, agitation, and irritability. Patients, families, and caregivers should pay close attention to any changes, especially sudden changes in mood, behaviors, thoughts, or feelings. This is very important when an antidepressant medicine is started or when the dose is changed. Report any change in these symptoms immediately to the doctor. Seroquel XR is not approved for patients under the age of 18 years. Seroquel is not approved for patients under the age of 10 years.
- Stop Seroquel XR or Seroquel and call your doctor right away if you have some or all of the following symptoms: high fever; stiff muscles; confusion; sweating; changes in pulse, heart rate, and blood pressure. These may be symptoms of neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS), a rare and serious condition that can lead to death
- High blood sugar and diabetes have been reported with Seroquel XR, Seroquel, and medicines like them. If you have diabetes or risk factors such as obesity or a family history of diabetes, your doctor should check your blood sugar before you start taking Seroquel XR or Seroquel and also during therapy. If you develop symptoms of high blood sugar or diabetes, such as excessive thirst or hunger, increased urination, or weakness, contact your doctor. Complications from diabetes can be serious and even life threatening
- Increases in triglycerides and in LDL (bad) cholesterol and decreases in HDL (good) cholesterol have been reported with Seroquel XR and Seroquel. Your doctor should check your cholesterol levels before you start Seroquel XR or Seroquel and during therapy
- Weight gain has been reported with Seroquel XR and Seroquel. Your doctor should check your weight regularly
- Tell your doctor about any movements you cannot control in your face, tongue, or other body parts, as they may be signs of a serious condition called tardive dyskinesia (TD). TD may not go away, even if you stop taking Seroquel XR or Seroquel. TD may also start after you stop taking Seroquel XR or Seroquel
- Other risks include feeling dizzy or lightheaded upon standing, decreases in white blood cells (which can be fatal), or trouble swallowing. Tell your doctor if you experience any of these
- Increases in blood pressure have been reported with Seroquel in children and teenagers. Your doctor should check blood pressure in children and adolescents before starting Seroquel and during therapy
- Before starting treatment, tell your doctor about all prescription and nonprescription medicines you are taking. Also tell your doctor if you have or have had low white blood cell count, seizures, abnormal thyroid tests, high prolactin levels, heart or liver problems, or cataracts. An eye exam for cataracts is recommended at the beginning of treatment and every 6 months thereafter
- Since drowsiness has been reported with Seroquel XR and Seroquel, you should not participate in activities such as driving or operating machinery until you know that you can do so safely. Avoid becoming overheated or dehydrated while taking Seroquel XR or Seroquel. Do not drink alcohol while taking Seroquel XR or Seroquel
- Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or intend to become pregnant. Avoid breast-feeding while taking Seroquel XR or Seroquel
- For Seroquel XR, the most common side effects in adults are drowsiness, dry mouth, constipation, dizziness, increased appetite, upset stomach, weight gain, fatigue, disturbance in speech and language, and stuffy nose. For Seroquel, the most common side effects in adults are drowsiness, dry mouth, dizziness, constipation, weakness, abdominal pain, a sudden drop in blood pressure upon standing, sore throat, weight gain, sluggishness, abnormal liver tests, and upset stomach. The most common side effects in children and adolescents are drowsiness, dizziness, fatigue, increased appetite, nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, rapid heartbeat, and weight gain
- Do not stop taking Seroquel XR or Seroquel without talking to your doctor. Stopping Seroquel XR or Seroquel suddenly may cause side effects
This is not a complete summary of safety information. Please discuss the full Prescribing Information for both products with your health care provider.
Seroquel XR is a once-daily tablet approved in adults for (1) add-on treatment to an antidepressant for patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) who did not have an adequate response to antidepressant therapy; (2) acute depressive episodes in bipolar disorder; (3) acute manic or mixed episodes in bipolar disorder alone or with lithium or divalproex; (4) long-term treatment of bipolar disorder with lithium or divalproex; and (5) schizophrenia. Seroquel is approved for (1) acute depressive episodes in bipolar disorder in adults; (2) acute manic episodes in bipolar disorder in adults when used alone or with lithium or divalproex; (3) acute manic episodes in bipolar disorder in children and adolescents ages 10 to 17 years; (4) long-term treatment of bipolar disorder in adults with lithium or divalproex; (5) schizophrenia in adults and (6) schizophrenia in adolescents ages 13-17 years.
Click here to see the Prescribing Information for Seroquel XR, including Boxed WARNINGS.
Click here to see the Medication Guide for Seroquel XR.
Click here to see the Prescribing Information for Seroquel, including Boxed WARNINGS.
Click here to see the Medication Guide for Seroquel.
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.FDA.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
The information on this Web site should not take the place of talking with your doctor or health care professional. If you have any questions about your condition, or if you would like more information about Seroquel XR, talk to your doctor or pharmacist. Only you and your health care professional can decide if Seroquel XR is right for you.
Patient photos are intended to be representative of typical patients with bipolar disorder and/or major depressive disorder and are not of actual patients.