Helix Healing & Recovery: A Mood & Thought Disorders Treatment Program
Helix Healing & Recovery is a treatment program that treats adults with primary mental health issues and dual diagnoses in an exclusive, residential setting. We take a collaborative approach with our clients to support them in learning how to manage their mental health and substance abuse issues. Our residential program offers a variety of holistic and empirically-based approaches to address the cognitive, emotional, psychosocial, and spiritual aspects of healing and recovery. Additionally, clients and their therapists may elect to utilize specific treatment modalities with more frequency in order to target specific mental health symptoms, including mood & thought disorders.
More About Mood & Thought Disorders
Sometimes called “manic-depression,” Bipolar disorder is a psychiatric condition characterized by extreme changes in mood, energy levels, and behaviors that disrupt daily functioning. People with Bipolar Disorder experience “swings” that tend to go far beyond the typical “highs and lows” experienced by most people throughout their lives.
During a period of low mood, a person with Bipolar Disorder experiences severe depression, frequently involving extraordinary sadness and despair, apathy, hopelessness, and sometimes, thoughts of suicide. During a “high” period, a person with Bipolar Disorder experiences a manic mood state: euphoria, extreme agitation, pressure speech, decreased need for sleep, overexcitability, impulsivity and a sense of invincibility and endless energy. People with Bipolar Disorder may also experience psychosis during either mood state when severe enough. Both mania and depression make it difficult for individuals to manage daily life, keep a job, maintain relationships and self-care (sleeping, eating, hygiene, spending).
Sometimes a person with Bipolar Disorder can experience both mania and depression at the same time, which is referred to as a “mixed” mood. A person experiencing a mixed mood typically experiences changes in activity and energy levels, as well as, behavior pattern and sleep that fluctuate with mood changes.
The age of onset for Bipolar disorder is typically during a person’s late teens or early adulthood, typically before the age of 25. Many people with Bipolar Disorder report experiencing Bipolar symptoms in childhood, whereas, others may develop symptoms much later in live. Although, the exact etiology of Bipolar Disorder is not fully understood, the disorder appears to have a strong genetic influence and involves imbalances in brain chemistry, and structural and functional abnormalities. As a lifelong condition, Bipolar typically requires on-going support to maintain stability.
Schizophrenia is a mental illness that influences the way a person experiences the world – schizophrenia is a thought disorder and affects the way a person thinks about and processes information. Consequently, schizophrenia affects what a person believes and how he or she interacts with others.
Individuals with schizophrenia often “lose touch” with reality as their perception of reality is altered due to their mental illness. It is important to note that the types and degree of symptoms vary to person to person. People with schizophrenia tend to display some combination of the symptoms described below including delusions, hallucinations, bizarre behavior, disorganized speech, paranoia, or “negative” symptoms.
- Delusions: paranoia, unusual beliefs, distorted perception or thinking others are persecuting, following or trying to hurt them. Individuals with schizophrenia often believe others can read their mind or they hold special abilities or powers. Additionally, people with schizophrenia may believe messages are being sent to them through inanimate objects.
- Hallucinations: can involve any or all of the senses. Auditory hallucinations include hearing voices or sounds that are not actually happening; visual hallucinations involve seeing people, colors, or objects that are not present; tactile hallucinations that include experiencing touch or other sensations that are not related to an actual environmental stimulus.
- Bizarre behavior: including acting in ways that most others would consider odd, confusing, strange or inappropriate within the context in which, they are demonstrated.
- Disorganized speech: speaking in a manner that most people find difficult to understand: speaking in loose associations, nonsensical “word salad,” responding oddly or speaking in a tangential or garbled way.
- “Negative symptoms” which often can appear as apathy, isolation, absence of motivation or interest, blunted or restricted range of emotional expression and tone, and rigid, constricted cognitive functioning.
The onset for Schizophrenia typically occurs in late adolescents or early adulthood, however, in can appear earlier or later, with women tending to have a later age of onset as compared to men. In general, the earlier the onset of schizophrenia, the more severe the illness tends to be. Schizophrenia often makes typical independent living skills difficult—maintaining relationships, self-care, keeping a job and dealing with typical life tasks. The symptoms of Schizophrenia can are often quite frightening and consequently, those with Schizophrenia may withdraw from the outside world or act out due to their own fear and confusion.
Schizoaffective Disorder is often difficult to properly diagnose given its wide breadth of symptoms and how it may present itself in individuals. A person who suffers from the disorder experiences the symptoms associated with schizophrenia, as well as the symptoms of a severe mood disorder.
There are two types of Schizoaffective Disorder—bipolar and depressive types. As the name implies, the Bipolar type of Schizoaffective Disorder is characterized by manic symptoms including decreased need for sleep, grandiosity, delusional thinking, irritability, impulsivity, pressured speech, psychomotor agitation need for sleep, distractibility, high-risk behavior including drug and alcohol abuse, hypersexuality, gambling, and overspending. Depressive symptoms may include depressed mood and affect, feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness and guilt, loss of appetite, or a significant change in sleep patterns (oversleeping or difficulty sleeping).
Although people with depression or bipolar disorder may also experience symptoms of psychosis during severe episodes of their illness, when well-treated and stable, individuals who have depression or bipolar disorder will not experience psychotic symptoms.
How Helix Healing & Recovery Treats Clients Recovering From Mood & Thought Disturbances
Helix Healing & Recovery is modeled after Hanbleceya Treatment Center, which has a rich history of treating mood & thought disturbances that goes back to 1979. Our first priority is treating the person and we view a client’s mental health and substance abuse issues as a part of the human being who comes to us seeking help and relief from suffering. The philosophy at Helix Healing & Recovery is to view the whole person –the person’s strengths, unique talents, and individual struggles. While many of our treatment modalities are effective for treating an array of “diagnoses,” we believe in the importance of recognizing the unique qualities of each human being and tailor aspects of treatment approaches to address aspects of an individual’s behavior that interfere with his or her ability to live a meaningful and productive life.
Helix Healing and Recovery community offers a safe and loving environment in which clients learn to respond to themselves, to others, and to situations in the world in an authentic and effective way. There is one main goal: to support clients in learning the skills he/she needs to live a happy, healthy, independent life. If you or a loved-one is suffering from mood & thought disorders, we are here to help. Your admission starts with a phone call to one of our admissions coordinators, who will be happy to answer any questions you may have.
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