Treatment of Disabilities and Disorders for Students Receiving Special Education and Related Services

Since March of 2020 and the pandemic, the traditional day at school has changed in many ways. Because of COVID-19, students were at home or splitting time between virtual learning and on-campus learning, and administrators, teachers and assistants were trying to adapt. Naturally, this made it difficult for students to have a consistent educational thread to follow. For students with disabilities, this time presented even greater clear and present challenges. Some students with disabilities are faced with additional hurdles in the classroom due to learning disorders, which inhibits their ability to process and retain information. Because numerous mental processes affect a student’s abilities, learning disorders can vary widely as well as the treatment options, and special educators must be equipped to navigate these challenges.

NASET's has now developed two new series, Diagnosis of Students with Disabilities and Disorders and Treatment Options for Students with Disabilities and Disorders. The latest series on Treatment Options provides teachers professionally based treatment options for a variety of disorders and disabilities involved with students with disabilities. Further, for children already receiving special education services, teachers may be interested in knowing how the specific disorder or disability is treated (**Note--It is very important to remember that any diagnosis or treatment of a disability or disorder must only be done by a trained and qualified professional or a team of professionals; it is never your role to make a specific diagnosis on any child).

Each article in this series describes the treatment options used to treat a disability or disorder.

LATEST ISSUE of NASET's Treatment of Disabilities and Disorders for Students Receiving Special Education and Related Services

Treatment of Bipolar Disorder

Overview of Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder (formerly called manic-depressive illness or manic depression) is a mental illness that causes unusual shifts in a person’s mood, energy, activity levels, and concentration. These shifts can make it difficult to carry out day-to-day tasks.

There are three types of bipolar disorder. All three types involve clear changes in mood, energy, and activity levels. These moods range from periods of extremely “up,” elated, irritable, or energized behavior (known as manic episodes) to very “down,” sad, indifferent, or hopeless periods (known as depressive episodes). Less severe manic periods are known as hypomanic episodes.

  • Bipolar I disorder is defined by manic episodes that last for at least 7 days (nearly every day for most of the day) or by manic symptoms that are so severe that the person needs immediate medical care. Usually, depressive episodes occur as well, typically lasting at least 2 weeks. Episodes of depression with mixed features (having depressive symptoms and manic symptoms at the same time) are also possible. Experiencing four or more episodes of mania or depression within 1 year is called “rapid cycling.”
  • Bipolar II disorder is defined by a pattern of depressive episodes and hypomanic episodes. The hypomanic episodes are less severe than the manic episodes in bipolar I disorder.
  • Cyclothymic disorder (also called cyclothymia) is defined by recurring hypomanic and depressive symptoms that are not intense enough or do not last long enough to qualify as hypomanic or depressive episodes.

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