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When to Call Your Psychiatrist
Some individuals with Bipolar Disorder are on the phone calling our psychiatrist at the first hint of any trouble.  A restless night is symptom enough for us to call.  Others of us delay and delay until when we finally do call we are in the midst of serious problems.  So where is that middle ground?  When should we call our psychiatrist for help?

We all know that our psychiatrists are busy people and most of us don't like to bother him/her with trivial problems.  There are times though that we must call.  We know our bodies and our thoughts and feelings better than anyone and must trust our innate gut instinct to call for help when it is required.

Contact your Psychiatrist if:

1.  Your mood is decidedly on an upward or downward swing.  See how to keep a  mood chart here.
2.  You are not doing well and feel you need to see him before your next appointment.
3.  A major life event has triggered instability.
4.  You recognize an event that has been a trigger for episodes for you.

Contact your Psychiatrist as Soon as Possible if:

1.  You have begun to think of suicide
2.  You are having side effects from your medications that interfere with your life
3.  An increased dosage of medication or new medication is not helping
4.  Your symptoms are worsening
5.  You are unable to sleep, work or handle your responsibilities
6.  Your mood is one of anger, aggression or rage for no real reason
7.  You are having feelings of paranoia (someone is watching you or out to get you etc)

Contact your Psychiatrist IMMEDIATELY if:

1.  You have decided to take your life by suicide, have a plan and that suicide is imminent.
2.  You have injured yourself.
3.  You know the toxic effects of the medications you take and are showing signs of toxicity and/or overdose.
4.  You begin to experience hallucinations (seeing or hearing things not heard by others)
5.  You feel explosive rage and feel you might hurt someone.
6.  Your mood is so severe that you are unable to manage any longer.

If any of the things happen in the Contact your psychiatrist IMMEDIATELY list, and you are unable to contact your own psychiatrist, you must take other steps.  These are all VERY SERIOUS!

You can call a suicide hotline, 911, or get yourself to the closest emergency immediately.  Such precautions save lives.


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