Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition where people experience extreme, intense, and uncontrollable mood swings. The person might be extremely depressed at one moment, but will suddenly feel overwhelming the next moment. There is an unpredictable level of mood changes involved coupled with irritability, restlessness, insomnia, and weight fluctuations. In simpler words, the person who is under the clutches of bipolar disorder experiences extreme emotional imbalance that, if left untracked, could lead to depression.
It is advisable to consult a physician to manage bipolar disorder. Along with the medications, yoga could help in balancing the mood by making the affected person more mindful. Yoga could improve self-awareness. Various asanas could ease stress and anxiety while Pranayama could help with breath control, bringing a sense of stability and relaxation. Yoga Nidra is hugely beneficial for people with bipolar disorder as it teaches total conscious relaxation in a controlled way.
So how exactly does yoga help with bipolar disorder management? Let’s take a quick look.
Yoga Therapy for Bipolar Disorder
Prasarita Padottanasana could ward off stress and reduce symptoms of depression. It is good for your spine and legs.
Stand with your feet together, keeping the spine long. Separate your legs about three to four feet apart. Rest the palms on your waist. Inhale and lengthen. As you exhale, fold forward and place the palms between your feet. Let the head hang freely. Use a block to support your head, if required. If you are an advanced practitioner, try to rest the crown of your head on the floor, without injuring your lower back. Hold for five breaths.
This breathing technique is a meditative one. It could calm the mind by reducing stress and alleviating anxiety. Regular practice of Nadi Sodhana Pranayama could also help balance the mind in chaotic situations. It could also teach you to be consciously aware of the present moment and your thoughts.
The technique mentioned below uses inhalations and exhalations in the ratio 1:1, and is ideal for those who are new to the Pranayama. If you have been practicing Alternate Nostril Breathing for some time, please feel free to continue your practice.
Sit down in a seated posture, keeping the spine long and erect to allow unobstructed energy flow. Close your eyes and comfortably rest your palms on your knees. Shape the left palm into Gyan Mudra, with the tips of the thumb and index fingers in contact.
Lift the right palm at shoulder level. Close your right nostril with the right thumb. Close your left nostril with your ring finger. Allow the tips of your index and middle fingers to rest between the brows. Stretch out the pinky finger to the ceiling.
Take seven normal breaths to prepare your body and mind for the practice. At the end of the seventh inhalation, close the right nostril with your thumb. Exhale completely through your left nostril.
Inhale through the left one for a count of six. Close the left, open the right nostril and exhale completely for a count of six. Inhale through the right for a count of six, close the right one, open the left, and exhale for a count of six. You complete one round of Nadi Sodhana Pranayama with this. Practice 10 such rounds initially. As you gain mastery over the practice, you can increase the duration.
This Mudra is the one you often practice while meditating. It could boost concentration and enhance enthusiasm. It could uplift your mood and balance your mind by calming and stabilizing it. It is very simple to practice this Mudra.
Sit down in a seated posture, keeping your spine long and erect to allow unobstructed energy flow. Close your eyes and comfortably rest your palms on your knees. Gently bend your index fingers and allow their tips to touch respective thumbs. Remain in practice for 15 to 30 minutes.
Yoga could be one of the best natural remedies for depression and mood stabilization that arises from bipolar disorder. Practicing three times a week, for two to three months continuously, could gift you peace and relaxation, enabling you to manage bipolar disorder in a better way.
Start working with Pari and feel the difference.