Social Rhythm Therapy for Bipolar Disorder

July 11, 2024 at 10:00 AM PT

Register for the free webinar with Dr. Holly Swartz, here.

Psychosocial interventions are valuable complements to medication in improving symptomatic and functional outcomes for individuals with bipolar disorder. Social Rhythm Therapy (SRT), derived from Interpersonal and Social Rhythm Therapy (IPSRT), is an evidence-based psychotherapy for individuals living with bipolar disorder. SRT uses behavioral strategies to stabilize underlying disturbances in circadian rhythms (also known as body clocks) that have been implicated in the genesis of bipolar disorder. Common examples of circadian rhythms include the sleep-wake cycle, patterns of hunger/eating, and periods of increased/decreased energy across the day. SRT helps individuals to increase the regularity of daily routines (social rhythms) to stabilize body clocks and thereby reduce mood symptoms.

This webinar will provide an overview of SRT. Topics will include the rationale for stabilizing social rhythms and a summary of SRT strategies and techniques. We will highlight understanding and managing the sleep-wake cycle in the context of circadian disruptions related to bipolar disorder. Resources for learning more about SRT will be provided, including information about a self-help SRT workbook that can be used as a self-guided intervention or in conjunction with SRT therapy.

Holly A. Swartz is Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. She received her undergraduate degree from Harvard College, medical degree from Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and completed her psychiatric residency training at New York Hospital / Cornell University School of Medicine. Dr. Swartz’s research focuses on understanding and optimizing treatments for mood disorders. She is well known for her work evaluating Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) and Interpersonal and Social Rhythm Therapy (IPSRT) as treatments for depression and bipolar disorder. Her research focuses on the role of IPSRT and pharmacotherapy in the management of bipolar II depression and IPT in the management of maternal depression. She is engaged in collaborative projects to develop computational frameworks to model dyadic interpersonal behaviors in relation to psychotherapy process and outcomes and to understand neural correlates of change in chronotherapeutic behavioral interventions. Her research has been funded by the National Institute of Health, National Science Foundation, and the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation.

Dr. Swartz is actively engaged in teaching, mentoring, and patient care. A certified IPT and IPSRT trainer and supervisor, she has taught these therapies to thousands of clinicians across the globe. Dr. Swartz has held elected leadership positions for national and international professional organizations, including serving as President of the International Society of Bipolar Disorders (ISBD ; 2024-2026), President of the International Society for Interpersonal Psychotherapy (ISIPT ; 2015-17), and Board Member of the American Society of Clinical Psychopharmacology (ASCP ; 2021-2029). She is the 2018 recipient of the Depression and Bipolar Association (DBSA) Gerald L. Klerman Senior Investigator Award in recognition of outstanding research contributing to the understanding, causes, diagnosis, and treatment of mood disorders. She is the author of over 100 publications, co-author of Bipolar II Disorder: Recognition, Understanding and Treatment (American Psychiatric Association Publishing, 2019), author of The Social Rhythm Therapy Workbook for Bipolar Disorder: Stabilize Your Circadian Rhythms to Reduce Stress, Manage Moods, and Prevent Future Episodes (New Harbinger Press, 2024), and Editor-in-Chief of the American Journal of Psychotherapy. She serves as a member of the Scientific Advisory Boards of DBSA and the International Bipolar Foundation.

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