July 31, 2023

How to Control Mood Swings

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Medicially Reviewed By:
Dr. Priya Chaudhri
credentials here

There is a big difference between simply expressing your feelings versus having overwhelming mood swings. Everyone has ups and downs, good moods, and grumpy days. But when mood swings become erratic and extreme, they can become debilitating and even harm your quality of life.

So, how do you control mood swings? Thankfully, there are some holistic methods you can utilize to help you gain better control over your emotions. However, if you have a mental health disorder, such as bipolar, you will need psychiatric support. To learn more about how to control mood swings, read on!

What Causes Mood Swings?

If you are prone to mood swings you probably find daily life quite challenging. Within a single day, your moods are all over the place – at turns feeling happy, irritated, angry, excited, or sad. Unpredictable mood swings can adversely impact your job, your relationships, and your overall wellness.

When we vacillate between mood states it can be a signal that something is amiss. There are several things that may contribute to mood swings. They include:

  • Chronic stress. Unrelenting stress can cause cortisol levels to rise, which leaves us feeling irritable and agitated.
  • Health condition. You may have an undiagnosed medical issue, such as diabetes, M.S., or a thyroid condition that is causing the mood swings.
  • Dietary deficiency. Moodiness can be caused by a vitamin or mineral deficiency, such as vitamins B, C, D, E, calcium, iron, or zinc.
  • Reaction to a medication. Some drugs, like corticosteroids, SSRIs, or Accutane, can trigger mood swings.
  • Substance abuse. The effects of drugs or alcohol can trigger unusual mood states.
  • Sleep disorder. Insomnia causes sleep deprivation, which in turn leads to feeling moody throughout the day.
  • Hormones. Changes in female hormone levels during perimenopause and menopause can cause mood swings.
  • Mood disorder. Bipolar disorder features abrupt shifts between manic and depressive mood states.
  • Personality disorder. Borderline personality disorder features mood swings in its symptom profile.

What is Bipolar Disorder?

Bipolar disorder is a complex form of mental illness. It features extreme mood swings that shift between mania and depression. There are four types of bipolar disorder, including bipolar I, bipolar II, cyclothymic disorder, and unspecified bipolar. Although it is difficult to manage bipolar disorder, with help from a mental health provider it is possible.

What is Borderline Personality Disorder?

A borderline personality disorder is a serious mental health condition that features unregulated emotions, unstable relationships, and poor self-esteem. Although someone with borderline wants to form lasting relationships, the angry outbursts, fear of abandonment, and mood swings undermine them.

5 Ways to Control Mood Swings

If you suffer from erratic moods, you are definitely interested in how to control mood swings. Here are 5 tips to help manage your mood state:

  1. Check our diet. Mood swings may be the result of a poor diet. Be sure you are getting enough calories throughout the day. Stick to a Mediterranean diet for optimal health. Reduce intake of processed foods, caffeine, and sugary treats.
  2. Create a fitness routine. Physical activity is the best thing you can do for mood swings. When we exercise our bodies release certain hormones that help to improve our mood and reduce stress levels.
  3. Learn to relax. Because high stress levels can trigger mood swings, it is helpful to learn some relaxation methods. These might include:
  • Yoga
  • Deep breathing techniques.
  • Meditation
  • Massage
  • Grounding techniques.
  • Acupuncture
  • Mindfulness
  • Aromatherapy

     4. Improve sleep quality. Not getting enough sleep, or getting poor quality sleep, can cause you to feel edgy and grumpy during the day. Establish a daily sleep schedule so your body can adapt to the circadian cycle.

     5. Seek happiness. Make an effort to seek out activities that make you feel joyful. These might be hobbies you once enjoyed that you take up again, or new activities that bring you happiness.

When It’s Time to Get Professional Help

Mood swings that are the result of a substance use disorder, bipolar disorder, or borderline personality disorder will necessitate professional support. These are conditions that you cannot overcome on your own and will need guidance and treatment to tackle.

When none of the above tips seem to help with controlling your mood swings, it is likely that there is a mental health disorder at play. A psychiatrist or therapist is able to diagnose the disorder and create a treatment plan that is right for you.

There are two main types of mental health treatment available, outpatient and residential. Outpatient is offered in three levels of care: basic outpatient therapy, intensive outpatient programs, and partial hospitalization programs. Residential treatment provides on-site housing and a more intensive treatment approach.

Residential Mental Health Treatment for Mood Swings

When seeking help for how to control mood swings, a residential program offers the most comprehensive treatment. These are small, private programs that are situated in a luxury home setting. These programs allow you the time to focus and work on the mental health challenge that’s behind the mood swings.

The treatment plan you receive will depend on the diagnosis. If the mood swings are due to substance abuse, you will be directed to a dual diagnosis program. If they are due to a mental health disorder, you will receive primary mental health treatment.

Treatment elements offered at a residential mental health program include:

Medication: Mood stabilizers, such as antipsychotics and antidepressants, are the most commonly prescribed drugs for treating bipolar disorder. There is no specific drug for borderline personality, although those drugs can help manage BPD symptoms.

Psychotherapy: Thoughts can influence mood and behaviors, and negative thoughts can lead to mood swings. CBT helps you identify thought distortions or triggers that lead to the unstable moods, and help you change them.

Interpersonal and social rhythm therapy.  IPSRT teaches life skills that help you develop a more stable mood state. This therapy focuses on forming a consistent daily routine, as well as improving relationships and stress management.

Holistic: Holistic therapies can help promote overall wellness. These might include massage therapy, yoga, deep breathing techniques, mindfulness, journaling, and guided meditation.

Elevation Behavioral Health Residential Mental Health and Dual Diagnosis Treatment

Elevation Behavioral Health offers the help you need to get to the bottom of and better manage your mood swings. If you are struggling and want to learn how to control mood swings, give us a call today at (888) 561-0868.

Our team of experts is here to help you.