PlushCare /  Online Doctor /  Mental Health /  Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder treatment available online today

Treatment of bipolar disorder will depend on symptoms, age and the severity of impact. While PlushCare does not have online psychiatrists to treat patients, our Collaborative Care Model includes Psychiatric Consultants and allows our primary care physicians to diagnose and treat some types of BD.

  • Medication services available 24/7 for adults and kids (3+)

  • Top quality, board-certified doctors

  • No insurance needed

  • Same-day prescriptions available*

*Prescriptions provided at doctor’s discretion.

We accept these insurance plans and many more!

Most patients with in-network insurance pay $30 or less. Otherwise, new patient visits are $129 and follow-ups are only $69 for members.

  • United Healthcare
  • Humana
  • Aetna

3 simple steps to request treatment for bipolar disorder

  • Book a bipolar disorder treatment appointment.

    Step 1

    Book a bipolar disorder treatment appointment.

    Book a same day appointment from anywhere.

  • Talk to your medical provider regarding your bipolar symptoms.

    Step 2

    Talk to your medical provider regarding your bipolar symptoms.

    Visit with a doctor on your smartphone or computer. Complete any necessary evaluations.

  • If prescribed, pick up a prescription to help treat bipolar disorder.

    Step 3

    If prescribed, pick up a prescription to help treat bipolar disorder.

    We can send prescriptions to any local pharmacy.

  • Book a bipolar disorder treatment appointment.

    Step 1

    Book a bipolar disorder treatment appointment.

    Book a same day appointment from anywhere.

  • Talk to your medical provider regarding your bipolar symptoms.

    Step 2

    Talk to your medical provider regarding your bipolar symptoms.

    Visit with a doctor on your smartphone or computer. Complete any necessary evaluations.

  • If prescribed, pick up a prescription to help treat bipolar disorder.

    Step 3

    If prescribed, pick up a prescription to help treat bipolar disorder.

    We can send prescriptions to any local pharmacy.

Bipolar disorder treatment pricing details

How pricing works

To request bipolar disorder treatment or refill on your prescription, join our monthly membership and get discounted visits

Paying with insurance

Membership

$14.99/month

First month free

First visit

Copay

For all visits

30 days of free membership

  • Same-day appointments 7 days a week
  • Unlimited messages with your 24/7 Care Team
  • Prescription discount card to save up to 80%
  • Exclusive discounts on lab tests
  • Free memberships for your family
  • Cancel anytime

Visit price with insurance

Often the same as an office visit. Most patients with in-network insurance pay $30 or less!

  • We accept these insurance plans and many more:
    • Humana
    • Aetna
    • United Healthcare

Paying without insurance

Membership

$14.99/month

First month free

First visit

$129

Repeats only $69

30 days of free membership

  • Same-day appointments 7 days a week
  • Unlimited messages with your 24/7 Care Team
  • Prescription discount card to save up to 80%
  • Exclusive discounts on lab tests
  • Free memberships for your family
  • Cancel anytime

Visit price without insurance

Initial visits are $129 and follow-ups are only $69 for active members.

Book an appointment

If we're unable to treat you, we'll provide a full refund.

Learn about bipolar disorder (BD)

Bipolar disorder is a mental illness that causes extreme shifts in mood, energy, activity levels, and behaviors. People with bipolar disorder typically experience mood episodes that can be categorized as manic/hypomanic (emotionally high) and depressive (emotionally low) moods. These manic episodes (or depressive episodes) can last from hours to months and affect sleep, energy, activity, behavior and mental acuity.

If left untreated, bipolar disorder can be detrimental to your health and the wellbeing of those around you. Treating this condition early and effectively is the key to living a normal life. According to the American Psychiatric Association, when properly diagnosed and treated, bipolar disorder is completely manageable, and many treated individuals with bipolar disorder live healthy and productive lives.

According to the National Institute of Health, there are various types of bipolar disorder present with differing severity of symptoms:

  • Bipolar I disorder – People diagnosed with bipolar I disorder have experienced manic episodes that lasted at least seven days or are so severe that requires hospitalization. A person can also suffer a major depressive episodes with each lasting at least two weeks
  • Bipolar II disorder – People with bipolar II disorder experience depressive episodes and hypomanic episodes, but not as severe as those in bipolar I disorder.
  • Cyclothymic disorder – People with cyclothymic disorder have a chronically unstable mood state. They experience shifting hypomania and mild depression episodes for at least two years.

Bipolar disorder causes

The exact cause of bipolar disorder is still an area of active scientific research, but scientists think several factors can contribute to bipolar disorder:

  • Biological differences

    People with bipolar disorder appear to have some subtle but detectable changes in their brain structures.

  • Environmental factors

    High stress and traumatic events (e.g. death in family) can trigger a manic or depressive episode.

  • Genetics

    People with bipolar disorder seem to have at least one close biological relative with  a similar condition. However, it should be noted that if you have a relative with bipolar disorder, it does not necessarily mean that you will develop bipolar disorder. Scientists are still trying to identify the genes that may be involved in triggering bipolar disorder.

  • Bipolar medication

    Common bipolar disorder medications can include the following:

  • Mood stabilizers

    Taken to control manic or hypomanic episodes.

    • Lamotrigine (Lamictal)

    • Lithium (Eskalith)

  • Antidepressants

    Some bipolar patients may be able to manage symptoms with certain antidepressants if prescribed and monitored by a psychiatrist. Doctors have to prescribe antidepressant medication together with mood stabilizing medication to prevent triggering a manic episode.

  • Antipsychotics

    Antipsychotics are available to prescription in order to treat psychosis. They are licensed to treat mental health problems that include psychotic experiences.

    • Quetiapine (Seroquel)

    • Risperidone (Risperdal)

  • Managing bipolar disorder

    Bipolar disorder is a long term mental health condition that requires continuous treatment to help manage the symptoms. In addition to medication, a patient can work with a mental health professional to receive psychotherapy (talk therapy) to help with the stresses of mood swings. There are a few psychotherapy options as well as a electroconvulsive therapy:

    • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT): During a session, a mental health professional will work with you to identify the negative thoughts/behaviors that trigger the episodes, and replace them with healthy, positive ones. With time, you will develop effective coping strategies.
    • Family-focused therapy: During a session, a mental health professional will help you and your family recognize warning signs of mood swings and develop effective management strategies as a family. Family focused therapy can be highly effective.
    • Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT): During a treatment session, electrical currents are passed through the brain to try and alter brain chemistry to help alleviate some of the symptoms.

    When to see a doctor for bipolar disorder

    If you develop any symptoms of depression or mania as described above, see your doctor or mental health professional for help, as bipolar disorder requires a formal diagnosis. With a professionally formulated treatment plan, you can minimize disruptions to your lifestyle.

    Note that thoughts of death and suicides are common among people with bipolar disorder. If you are thinking of hurting yourself, call 911 or your local emergency number immediately.

    Related conditions to bipolar disorder

    • Anxiety
      • An anxiety disorder is a mental health disorder characterized by debilitating feelings of anxiety or fear. Some studies have shown that many patients with bipolar disorder also suffer from at least one anxiety disorder, or will develop at least one at some point.
    • Depression
      • Patients suffering from bipolar disorder will undergo depressive episodes.
    • OCD
      • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, OCD, is an anxiety disorder. A person suffering from OCD will have recurrent, unwanted thoughts (obsessions) and/or repetitive behaviors (compulsions). Some studies have shown that many patients with bipolar disorder also tend to suffer from OCD concurrently.
    • ADHD
      • Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a mental health condition that is characterized by chronic problems including difficulty paying attention and acting hyperactively or impulsively. Some symptoms of ADHD, such as impulsivity and inattention, can overlap with bipolar disorder. Some patients with bipolar disorder also suffer from ADHD.
    • PTSD
      • Post-traumatic stress disorder, PTSD, is an anxiety disorder. A person suffering from PTSD had undergone/witnessed a traumatic event, and will suffer intense anxiety when triggered. Some studies have shown that many patients with bipolar disorder also tend to suffer from PTSD concurrently.

     

  • How to treat bipolar disorder

    Treatment of bipolar disorder will depend on the individual’s symptoms, age, and the severity of impact. Prescription medication is a common form of treatment for bipolar disorder. Psychotherapy (talk therapy) is another form of treatment for bipolar that is highly effective when paired together with medication.

    Please note that while we do not have online psychiatrists at this time and therefore cannot diagnose bipolar disorder, our primary care physicians may be able to refill prescriptions to treat bipolar disorder. Our board-certified physicians can refer you to one of our therapists for further treatment, as well as a psychiatrist for in-person medication management of bipolar disorder.

    Bipolar disorder symptoms

    Below we describe the manic symptoms and the depressive symptoms:

  • Manic and hypomanic episodes

    • A manic episode is much more severe than a hypomanic episode. It can trigger a break from reality (psychosis) and require hospitalization. Both types of episodes include these manic symptoms of bipolar disorder:
      • Abnormally happy, excited
      • Restlessness
      • Increased energy
      • Decreased sleep
      • Rapid speech
      • Poor decision making
      • Psychotic symptoms of bipolar disorder such as hallucinations and delusions
      • Depressive episodes

  • Depressive symptoms

    • Depressed mood, such as overwhelming sadness
    • Low energy
    • No motivation
    • Irritability
    • Decreased sleep
    • Thoughts of death or suicide

  • Bipolar disorder treatment FAQs

    • What is the best treatment for bipolar disorder?

      The best treatment for bipolar disorder is a combination of medication and psychotherapy.

    • What is the best medication for bipolar disorder?

      Depending on the type of bipolar disorder and also the severity of your symptoms, your doctor will prescribe the appropriate medicine. Doctors have to prescribe antidepressant medication together with mood stabilizing medication to prevent triggering a manic episode.

    • Can bipolar be cured without medication?

      No. Bipolar disorder doesn’t go away and requires a formal diagnosis. If you develop any symptoms of depression or mania, see your doctor or mental health professional for help. With a professionally formulated treatment plan, you can minimize disruptions to your lifestyle.

    • How can a person tell if they are bipolar?

      Many times, people with bipolar disorder fail to recognize how much their mood swings disrupt their lives and those close to them. If you develop any symptoms of depression or mania, see your doctor or mental health professional to get a formal diagnosis.

    • Can bipolar disorder be cured permanently?

      Unfortunately, bipolar disorder cannot be cured permanently. Bipolar disorder is a long term mental health condition that requires continuous treatment to help manage the symptoms. With the right combination of medication and therapy, many patients can continue to have normal lives.