A new, though small, study found among people with bipolar disorder that even heavier drinkers might not have more bipolar symptoms than light drinkers or non-drinkers, provided they take their meds as directed.

It should be noted that the study, which took place in The Netherlands, was small--only 137 people participated. People with bipolar disorder are also more likely than the average person to also struggle with substance abuse. Thus, many mental health professionals encourage their bipolar patients not to drink alcohol or to use non-prescribed mood-altering drugs.

The article in Reuters about the study indicates that perhaps so much caution isn’t always warranted, and that alcohol consumption might need to be approached more on a case-by-case basis.

The authors are calling for further research.