Question: What kinds of things might bring on a manic or depressive episode after I've been stable for a while, and are there things I can do to prevent relapse?
Answer: Well there are a variety of reasons people relapse. Some actually are unavoidable and they are due to the things that we don't understand. We know that the longer a person has bipolar disorder, often times it becomes more and more difficult to treat. A common reason that people don't do well after they've been stabilized is in fact they stop taking their medicine as prescribed even if they've previously done well in it.
A lot of people understandably really find the need to take treatment, in particular if it's medicine, burdensome or worrisome and often times that really is problematic. Certainly stressors can also lead to relapses and difficult life events can as well. So ultimately a good lifestyle, taking good care of oneself and working collaboratively with clinicians to ensure that the treatment regiment that's in place is got the patient's best interests in mind while at the same time doesn't provide too much of a burden to them can all really help prevent relapse.