Depression and bipolar support alliance www.dbsalliance.org
DBSA is a not-for-profit consumer organization with satellite organizations all over the US and one in Australia. It has a scientific advisory board and offers easy to understand information on bipolar disorder and depression, treatments, recovery and research trials. There is a special section devoted to family and friends. In addition, caregivers and people with bipolar disorder or depression can access discussion forums and online or face to face support groups. They also offer training courses to assist people to live well with their illness.
International Bipolar Foundation (IBPF) www.internationalbipolarfoundation.org
This organization is dedicated to enhancing care and support services for those affected by bipolar disorder, encouraging helpful research and public education. The IBPF website includes information on bipolar disorder, how to get help, treatment, educational brochures and videos, news about the latest international research and international resources. There are also forums for people with bipolar disorder and family members and there is a list of other support groups. Their E-newsletter is aimed at keeping family members up to date with bipolar news, research and events.
International Society for Bipolar Disorders www.isbd.org
This is an international organization aimed at fostering education and research to advance the treatment of all aspects of bipolar disorders to improve quality of life for those with bipolar disorder and their family member and friends.
Mental Health America www.nmha.org
Mailing address: 2000 N. Beauregard Street, 6th Floor Alexandria, VA 22311.
This is a non-profit national mental health association. It assists people with mental illness and their families to find treatment, support groups, medication information and helps with issues such as financial concerns around treatment.
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) www.nami.org
Information helpline: 1-800-950-NAMI (6264).
Mailing address: NAMI, Colonial Place Three, 2107 Wilson Blvd., Suite 300, Arlington, VA 22201-3042
This large organization offers information, advocacy and support in every state in the US. NAMI run a family –to family education program for caregivers of people with mental illness including bipolar disorder that is available in the USA, parts of Canada, Mexico and Puerto Rico. Initial evaluation of this program suggests that it can reduce caregiver worry and displeasure and increase caregivers’ sense of empowerment.
National Mental Health Information Center (NMHIC) www.mentalhealth.samhsa.gov/database/
NMHIC is a database you can use to locate mental health services in your area in the US, as well as suicide prevention and substance abuse programs.
Juliet shares her experience of bipolar disorder and Greg, her partner, contributes a familymember’s perspective. They provide both a personal perspective and information and resourceson topics that are relevant to people living with bipolar disorder.
Bipolar World www.bipolarworld.net
This website offers a variety of information, news and different chat rooms for people with bipolar disorder, people with concurrent alcohol or drug problems, veterans, parents and significant others. There is also an ‘ask a psychiatrist’ facility and articles related to disability and mental health law in America and Canada.
Harbour of Refuge Organization, Inc. www.harbor-of-refuge.org
This site aims to encourage a safe community of people with bipolar disorder who are on medication and serious about managing their illness, and their caregivers. You can access online discussions and useful links to a variety of resources.
McMan’s Depression and Bipolar Web www.mcmanweb.com
This site presents information on bipolar disorder and related topics in a unique and interesting way. It makes the latest research in the area easy and enjoyable to read and has a number of useful resources.
Psych education is run by Dr Jim Phelps, a psychiatrist and expert on bipolar disorder who offers good quality information on bipolar disorder, causes, treatment, research and resources. There is also a section on “What to look out for when choosing a psychiatrist or psychologist?”.
Psych Central www.psychcentral.com
Mailing address: Psych Central, 55 Pleasant St., Suite 207, Newburyport, MA 01950
Psych Central offers information, news, book reviews, blogs and resources on a variety of mental health problems and treatment including bipolar disorder and depression. There is a moderated online supportive communities and a useful ‘ask the therapist’ facility. This website is maintained by Dr Grohol, a psychologist and expert on online mental health.
WRAP (Wellness Recovery Action Plan) http://copelandcenter.com
Mailing address: Copeland Center for Wellness and Recovery, PO Box 6471?Brattleboro, VT 05302
WRAP is a program developed by people with mental health difficulties at the Copeland Center for Wellness and Recovery. It focuses on wellness tools and strategies and helps people to monitor and plan how to respond to symptoms and crises.