Bipolar disorder type II is commonly treated with the same medications at bipolar I. However, the proportion of the time spent depressed, as opposed to hypomania, is remarkably greater. The fact that there tends to be more depressive episodes in bipolar II requires that medications like lamotrigine, quetiepine, and lurasidone. The highs are shorter and less severe and the depressions tend to be longer and more severe. Some psychiatrists prescribed the traditional antidepressants for bipolar II, but my clinical impression is that this practice is problematic and frequently worsens the course of illness when patients present with more frequent episodes – something called rapid cycling.
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Donna Hill Howes, RN, Administrator, answeredBipolar II disorder is the milder form of bipolar disorder. With bipolar II disorder, you will have symptoms of depression along with the higher mood of hypomania or mild mania. Medications for bipolar II disorder are prescribed by a psychiatrist and may include lithium or an anticonvulsant to stabilize the moods, an antidepressant to lift the depressive state, and/or an antipsychotic. Usually, people with bipolar II disorder can take mood stabilizers for years to keep mood swings controlled.