Bipolar disorder, also known as bipolar-depressive syndrome or manic depression, is a mental illness that causes erratic mood swings, energy levels, attention problems, and the inability to carry out daily tasks.
Bipolar disorder is divided into three categories. The mood, capacity, and activity levels shift in all three forms. Bipolar disorder treatment is a mixture of medications and therapies for both manic and depressive symptoms.
Less severe manic periods are known as hypomanic episodes. Manic episodes that go on for at least seven days, or severe manic symptoms that require urgent hospital treatment, are signs of Bipolar I Disorder.
Depressive episodes are common, and they usually last at least two weeks. It’s also possible to have episodes of depression with mixed characteristics. Bipolar II Disorder is characterized by a series of depressive and hypomanic symptoms rather than the full-fledged manic episodes seen in Bipolar I Disorder.
Cyclothymic disorder is characterized by episodes of hypomanic and depressive symptoms that last at least two years. The signs, however, do not follow the medical criteria for a hypomanic or depressive episode.
Other identified and undefined bipolar and associated conditions refer to symptoms of bipolar disorder that do not fit into the three definitions mentioned above. Bipolar disorder is most often detected in late adolescence or early adulthood.
Bipolar symptoms may occur in children on occasion. Bipolar disorder may develop during a woman’s pregnancy or after she gives birth. Bipolar disorder typically necessitates permanent care, although the symptoms can change over time.
People can control their symptoms and improve their quality of life by following a recommended treatment plan.
Symptoms and Signs
People with bipolar disorder have cycles of extreme emotion, shifts in sleep habits and activity levels, and uncharacteristic activities, which they don’t often recognize as negative or undesirable. The term “mood episodes” refers to these specific times.
Mood episodes vary significantly from the person’s normal moods and behaviors. Symptoms last for a majority of the day, every day during an episode. Longer episodes, such as multiple days or weeks, are also possible.
In some instances, individuals have both psychotic and depressive symptoms at the same time. An episode with mixed features is the name given to this type of episode. People experiencing a mixed-feature episode may feel sad, empty, or hopeless while still feeling incredibly energized.
Even if a person’s symptoms aren’t as severe as some, they can have bipolar disorder. Hypomania, a milder type of mania, is experienced by some people with bipolar disorder (Bipolar II). During a hypomanic episode, a person can feel great, accomplish tasks, and function normally.
Although the person does not notice something is wrong, family and friends may notice changes in mood or activity levels that indicate bipolar disorder. People with hypomania can experience extreme mania or depression if they are not appropriately treated.
People with bipolar disorder will live safe and productive lives with the correct diagnosis and care. The first move is to speak with a doctor or other approved health care provider. To rule out any issues, the health care provider may perform a physical examination and order the required medical tests.
The health care provider can then perform a mental health assessment or refer you to a qualified mental health care provider with experience diagnosing and treating bipolar disorder, such as a psychiatrist, psychologist, or clinical social worker.
Bipolar disorder is diagnosed by mental health professionals based on a person’s symptoms, past experiences, and, in some cases, family history. The importance of accurate diagnosis in children and adolescents cannot be overstated.
Bipolar Disorder and Related Disorders
Since certain bipolar disorder symptoms are identical to those of other diseases, it may be difficult for a doctor to diagnose.
Furthermore, many individuals with bipolar disorder may have another mental illness or disease, such as anxiety, drug abuse, or an eating disorder. Thyroid disease, migraine headaches, heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and other physical disorders are common in people with bipolar disorder.
Bipolar Disorder Treatment and Therapy
Many individuals, even those with the most severe types of bipolar disorder, will benefit from treatment. Medication and psychotherapy, also known as “chat therapy,” are commonly combined in a successful treatment plan.
Bipolar disorder is a chronic condition that lasts a lifetime. Mania and depression episodes seem to recur over time. Many people with bipolar disorder experience no mood changes in between episodes, but some people can experience residual symptoms.
People with these symptoms can benefit from long-term, consistent care. Certain drugs can aid in the treatment of bipolar disorder symptoms. Some people will need to try various drugs and consult with their doctor to find the ones that work best for them.