I work in the local area and wanted to give some more resources for you.
In Dallas there is a psychiatrist doing SPECT brain scans to help diagnose specific brain dysfunctions to help properly diagnose and treat conditions such as Bipolar. This is new technology with good research behind it but your insurance may not cover it. The same is true for Neurofeedback
, which can work really well in children and teens. This clinic does both: http://www.clementsclinic.com/.
If I had a child in your situation and could afford these services, I'd give them a shot. Neurofeedback first, SPECT second. I want to make sure my child has ever chance to improve brain function rather than just medicate.
Medication also works best when combined with counseling to help manage symptoms and learn coping skills. The psychiatrist I'm hearing good things about for this population is Dr Burgos at(###) ###-#### The Meier Clinic offers counselors and psychiatrists in the same building. http://www.meierclinics.com/?p=81 For medications I'd look at Dr Torres-Roca, and for counseling Dr Crawford.
As far as inpatient treatment, try to avoid the Seay Center. We've seen better luck with UBH in Denton, GreenOaks Dallas, and Timberlawn Dallas. But like adult programs, most are for stabilization and crisis as opposed to in depth treatment.
If you have some names from your insurance list of providers, feel free to post them and I can try to give you feedback if I know of any of them. Finding a good treatment team is hard.
The Dallas NAMI branch offers great support groups for Bipolar and you can hear about good and not so good professionals by talking to other mental health consumers.
A workbook I often use in counseling with teens with Bipolar is available at Amazon.com:The Bipolar Workbook for Teens: Dbt Skills to Help You Control Mood Swings (Instant Help)
by Sheri Van Dijk
and Karma Guindon
Another web resource, including information for you and your teen, and a directory of professionals who paid to be listed (which usually means they are serious about treating Bipolar in kids, and that they usually are accepting new clients) is http://www.bpkids.org/connect/find