Researchers from the University of Texas at Dallas (UT Dallas) Center for BrainHealth recently published a study showing that people with bipolar disorder may see improved brain health from strategy-based reasoning training.
“Mood fluctuations are the most common
symptoms of bipolar disorder and are often effectively managed with
medications,” Center for BrainHealth Clinician Erin Venza, lead author of the study, said. “In contrast, cognitive deficits, which are also very common in the
disorder, are rarely addressed. This study offers preliminary evidence that
those with psychiatric disorders may receive added benefit from combined
interventions, such as medications and strategy-based reasoning training.”
Published in Frontiers in Psychology, the
study suggests that reasoning training can increase brain blood flow in the
prefrontal cortex and can trigger improvements in executive function and memory.
The study had 27 participants ranging from 21 to 70, all of whom had diagnoses
of bipolar I or II and had been on medication for at least three months.
“Fortunately, medication is able to
stabilize mood for individuals with bipolar disorder,” Center for BrainHealth Founder and Chief Director Dr. Sandra Chapman, the study’s principal investigator, said. “However, many continue to struggle with goal setting and
decision-making in a way that makes it difficult to live independently. These
strategies may provide a set of tangible and definable strategies to provide a
road map as to how to be more mentally engaged and productive each day whether
at work and in personal situations.”
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