Because DBSA is peer-focused, we can offer clinicians and other professionals unique insight into the needs of patients and clients in areas such as treatment and communication. We believe that the best outcomes occur when the physician and patient are collaborative partners in the treatment decision-making process. DBSA is assisted by a Scientific Advisory Board comprised of the leading researchers and clinicians in the field of mood disorders. DBSA advocates for peers, encouraging productive patient/provider partnerships.
How DBSA Support Groups Can Help
Benefits for Clinicians Include:
- improved treatment outcomes through support;
- reduced hospitalizations and acute episodes;
- empowered, motivated, educated patients; and
- natural supports to motivate activation and engagement.
Benefits for Patients Include:
- confidential environment to discuss wellness strategies;
- a sense of belonging and of feeling less alone;
- connection to hopeful peers who have been there and can help; and
- real-life support between doctor visits.
DBSA’s peer-run support groups provide a safe and welcoming forum for mutual acceptance and self-discovery. Group members share coping skills and help one another understand treatment. Physicians can give patients a solid recovery foundation by referring them to area DBSA groups, or contacting DBSA to start a group. Learn more about what DBSA support groups are—and are not.
DBSA support groups are not a substitute for professional care. DBSA chapters and support groups do not endorse or recommend the use of any specific treatment or medication. For advice about specific treatment or medication, individuals should consult their physicians and/or mental health professionals.
When treatment plans are created jointly and in equal partnership between people who live with mood disorders and those who treat them, individuals are more invested in, served by, and able to achieve those plans. By encouraging the collaborative care model, we hope to foster a more peer-centered approach that improves the effectiveness of treatments for people living with mood disorders.
DBSA is guided by a Scientific Advisory Board comprised of the leading researchers and clinicians in the field of mood disorders. SAB members are frequent contributors to educational programming offered by DBSA.
The Wellness Tracker is an online tool and phone app that helps individuals track key indicators of, or influences on, a person’s mental, emotional, and physical health—overall mood, symptoms, lifestyle influences, medications and side effects, and physical statistics.
The Wellness Wheel is an easy-to-use tool that gives a person a complete picture of the progress they have made in their wellness journey. As they create their own wheel, users will see strengths in perspective and discover ways to move toward the life they want to live.
Printed one– or six-month calendars that allow individuals to track their overall mood and several influencing factors. The calendar provides you with a snapshot of how your patient is doing so that you can probe into potential contributing factors to any significant changes or persistent problems reflected on the calendar.
Early childhood is a time when young ones are learning about emotions and finding ways to express them. This fun and engaging educational program, designed for ages 4 to 10, helps adults open a positive conversation about feelings with children.
Compassionate Language Guide
To promote better understanding of appropriate language for mental health and to combat discrimination against individuals living with these experiences, the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance has created ten principles of compassionate language. Whether you are a peer, family member, co-worker, clinician, or member of the media, we encourage you to adopt them. By doing so, you help work against the stigma that so often surrounds mental health.
Understanding Agitation Kit for Treatment Teams and Medical Staff
Agitation is an acute behavioral emergency requiring immediate intervention. In this simulation, Scott Zeller, M.D. demonstrates verbal de-escalation. De-escalation is highly effective and has been identified as the preferred intervention in calming a person experiencing agitation. This technique is also key to avoiding seclusion and restraint, which can be traumatizing to both patients and staff. The goal in verbal de-escalation is to help the person regain control so that he or she can better communicate needs with health care providers.
Production of the DBSA Understanding Agitation video series was supported by a contribution from Teva.
Psychiatrist as Patient: Caring for the Caregiver
Watch our documentary short that follows the life of John Budin, MD, a respected psychiatrist who reveals his mental health condition after nearly 35 years.
As a service to clinicians, DBSA works with many partners who provide educational courses and materials centered on mental health. Our goal is to provide clinicians with learning opportunities that support quality mental health care, especially for those who live with mood disorders.
DBSA supports the efforts of scientists and clinicians to develop new and more effective treatments for mood disorders. Members of our Scientific Advisory Board are at the forefront of this research.
Submit Your Study
Submit your study for posting among DBSA’s research study listings.
We also partner on research collaborations to help you expand the reach and impact of your programs and initiatives. Contact us for more information.