Bipolar Depression

The Blech Effect: A New Film About the Impact of Bipolar Disorder on a Family

David Blech would be a multi-billionaire today if only he had been asleep for the last 15 years. In his early 20s, David, his older brother, Isaac, and their father became pioneers in the biotech industry when they built Genetic Systems Corporation around a group of talented scientists including Robert Nowinski. The company was sold to Bristol Myers in 1986 for $294 million of Bristol Myers stock.

Blech’s wealth grew with the industry as he served as the initial financial force behind more...


What Does Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMDD) Have To Do with Bipolar?

Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMDD) is a childhood condition characterized by ongoing irritability and frequent temper outbursts (verbal or behavioral) that are inappropriate for the given situation and excessive to whatever provoked the outburst. This is a relatively new diagnosis introduced in the latest (fifth) edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), which was published in 2013.

Prior to the DMDD diagnosis, many children with these symptoms (ongoing irritability...


Clarifying Your Diagnosis

Although people who live with bipolar, depression, or other psychiatric illnesses often are relieved to receive an explanation for why they are feeling the way they feel, they rarely, if ever, appreciate being "labeled." In fact, we go out of our way not to...


Marijuana and Bipolar Disorder

As cannabis has become legal for medical and recreational purposes in many states, discussing risks and benefits of cannabis in relationship to health and illness has become part of routine medical care. Physicians are fielding questions about marijuana prescriptions for many different illnesses. Products containing the cannabidiol (CBD) component of cannabis, have exploded onto commercial platforms as over-the-counter products with claims of health benefits for every type of symptom. Our job as physicians is to try to present treatment options and balance the risks and benefits. Unfortunately, for now, too little information is available about the effectiveness of "medical" marijuana for me to offer an opinion informed by any scientific evidence in these areas.


KIOS Bipolar Mood Navigator

In Bipolar Disorder For Dummies, I point out that a key self-help strategy for living well with bipolar disorder is to monitor your moods, and I provide a Mood/Sleep Chart to facilitate the process. I also point out that those who prefer to track...


Tune Out the Bad News

I was recently interviewed by Meredith Carroll for her article in Redbook, "My 6-Year-Old Is Obsessed with National Tragedies — and I Doubt She's Alone," which is based on the author's experience that "it's practically impossible to go outside, online, open a newspaper, or turn on the TV and not have to pick your jaw up off the floor over an international crisis, natural disaster, or a national tragedy." The article specifically discusses how to talk to young children about tragedy or disaster...