6 Bipolar Disorders Nursing Care Plans


Bipolar disorders are mood disorders that comprise of one or more manic or hypomanic episode and usually one or more depressive episodes with periods of relatively normal functioning in between. They are said to be linked to biochemical imbalances in the brain and it is said that the disease is genetically transferred.

Nursing Care Plans

Clients with bipolar disorders are at a high risk for suicide. Although clients in the manic phase are briefly agitated, energized and elated, their underlying depression makes them likely to inflict self-injury.

Essential responsibilities of nurses are to provide a safe environment, to improve the self-esteem, to meet the physiologic needs and to guide patients toward socially appropriate behavior.

Here are six (6) nursing care plans (NCP) and nursing diagnosis (NDx) for bipolar disorders:

  1. Risk For Injury
  2. Risk For Violence: Self-Directed or Other Directed
  3. Impaired Social Interaction
  4. Ineffective Individual Coping
  5. Interrupted Family Processes
  6. Total Self-Care Deficit

Interrupted Family Processes

Nursing Diagnosis

  • Interrupted Family Processes

May be related to

  • Erratic and out-of-control behavior of one family member with the potential for dangerous behavior affecting all family members (violence, leaving family in debt, risky behaviors in relationships and business, fragrant infidelities, unprotected and promiscuous sex).
  • Family role shift.
  • Nonadherence to antimanic and other medications.
  • Shift in the health status of family member.
  • Situational crisis or transistion (e.g., illness, manic episode of one member).

Possibly evidenced by

  • Changes in communication patterns.
  • Changes in participation in decision making.
  • Changes in participation in problem solving.
  • Changes in effectiveness in completing assigned tasks.
  • Deficient knowledge regarding disorder, need for medication adherence, and available support systems.
  • Family in crisis.
  • Inability to deal with traumatic or crisis experiences constructively.

Desired Outcomes

  • Family members and/or significant others will discuss with nuse/counselor three areas of family life that are most disruptive and seek alternative options with aid of nursing/counseling interventions.
  • Family members and/or significant others will state and have in writing the names and telephone numbers of at least two bipolar support groups.
  • Family members and/or significant others will state that they have gained support from at least one support group on how to work with family member when he or she is manic.
  • Family members and/or significant others will state their understand the need for medication adherence, and be able to identify three signs that indicate possible need for intervention when their family member’s mood escalates.
  • Family members and/or significant others will briefly discuss and have in writing, the names and addresses of two bipolar organizations, two Internet site addresses, and medication information regarding bipolar disorder.
  • Family members and/or significant others will state that they find needed support and information in a support group (s).
  • Family members and/or significant others will identify the signs of increase manic behavior in their family member.
  • Family members and/or significant others will state what they will do (whom to call, where to go) when client’s mood begins to escalate to dangerous levels.
  • Family members and/or significant others will demonstrate an understanding of what a bipolar disorder is, the medications, the need for adherence to medication and treatment.
Nursing Interventions Rationale
During the first or second day of hospitalization, spend time with family identifying their needs during this time; for example:

  1. Need for information about the disease.
  2. Need for information about lithium or other antimanic medications (e.g., need for adherence, side effects, toxic effects).
  3. Knowledge about bipolar support groups in the family’s community and how they can help families going through crises.
This is a disease that can devastate and destroy some families. During an acute manic attack, families experience a great deal of disruption and confusion when their family members begins to act bizarre, out of control and at times aggressive. Families need to understand about the disease what can and cannot be done to help control the disease, and where to go for help for their individual issues.

See Also

You may also like the following posts and care plans:

Mental Health and Psychiatric Care Plans

Care plans about mental health and psychiatric nursing:

Paul Martin is a registered nurse with a bachelor of science in nursing since 2007. Having worked as a medical-surgical nurse for five years, he handled different kinds of patients and learned how to provide individualized care to them. Now, his experiences working in the hospital is carried over to his writings to help aspiring students achieve their goals. He is currently working as a nursing instructor and have a particular interest in nursing management, emergency care, critical care, infection control, and public health. As a writer at Nurseslabs, his goal is to impart his clinical knowledge and skills to students and nurses helping them become the best version of themselves and ultimately make an impact in uplifting the nursing profession.

5 thoughts on “6 Bipolar Disorders Nursing Care Plans”

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