Bipolar disorder is a mental illness that can be challenging to identify. Some people find it challenging to identify the indicators of bipolar disorder in themselves and in their loved ones since the symptoms of the disorder have many parallels with those of other illnesses.
This blog post will look at the causes of bipolar disorder and how differing diagnoses have an impact on how people respond to therapy. Consider your personal experiences as you read about the many diagnosis listed below.
Any of the descriptions ring a bell? If so, give us a call at 1-855-380-3300 right now or start a live online conversation with one of our experts. We want you to understand that there is still a chance for recovery from this challenging illness!
You likely have many questions if you or someone you know has just received a bipolar disorder diagnosis.
Even if you have known about your diagnosis for some time, there are still likely some aspects of the condition that you do not fully comprehend.
This essay will outline key information about bipolar disorder that you should be aware of.
What is Bipolar Disorder?
Manic-depressive disorder, also known as bipolar disorder, is characterised by abrupt and occasionally dramatic mood swings.
Although those who have bipolar disorder commonly experience mood swings, there are many types of the illness.
Bipolar I Disorder
A person is said to have bipolar I disorder if they have experienced at least one intense manic episode that lasted at least seven days. People with bipolar I illness frequently go through depressive periods as well, and they may even go through both mania and depression at the same time.
Manic symptoms in bipolar individuals I might be seriously ill enough to require emergency hospital care.
Bipolar II Disorder
A person with bipolar II is said to have had at least one extremely depressive episode. They won’t go through the intense manic episodes, but they may go through periods of hypomanic episodes.
A person with cyclothymic disorder, also known as cyclothymia, experiences periods of hypomanic and depressive symptoms alternately. A person with cyclothymia will experience symptoms for at least two years as an adult and at least one year as a child or adolescent.
Cyclothymics experience both mania and depression, but not severe mania or severe depression.
Bipolar disorder symptoms that don’t fall within the aforementioned categories are referred to as other or non-specified. For instance, the problem might be brought on by alcohol and drugs, or it might be linked to other illnesses like multiple sclerosis or stroke.
You are not alone; in fact, nearly 5 million people in the US alone suffer from bipolar disorder.
How Common is Bipolar Disorder?
The diagnosis of bipolar illness is fairly widespread. In reality, around 5.7 million adult Americans suffer with bipolar disorder. 2.6% of Americans are represented by that.
It is tough to estimate the number of children or teenagers who are impacted. As the standards for diagnosis are still up for discussion, many young people go undetected. But according to study, as many as 1.8% of kids and teenagers suffer with bipolar disorder.
What are the Signs of Bipolar Disorder?
As was noted in the preceding section, bipolar disorder can be categorised in a number of ways. A person may go through an extended manic phase or an extended depression phase, depending on the illness. A person with bipolar disorder may alternate between the two or experience them both simultaneously.
But what exactly are mania and depression, and what symptoms indicate that someone is going through either one or both of these states?
What is the Manic Phase of Bipolar Disorder?
It could initially appear as though someone would want to remain in a manic phase. Mania can cause someone to feel wonderful, have a tonne of energy, or work really hard. Sadly, mania may also be frightening, harmful, and upsetting to other people.
A manic episode might make it difficult to go asleep. They frequently struggle with concentration, and it’s possible that they have trouble communicating with others. Those who behave normally might find it difficult to relate to them because of how rapidly and jumbledly their thoughts and words can come out.
Manic individuals may become agitated or angry and exhibit unsafe behaviours like excessive spending or impulsive sex. Making rash or harmful decisions is significantly simpler for someone experiencing a manic episode.
In addition, it’s not uncommon for persons with mania to start using drugs to mimic the euphoria they experience.
In more severe situations, those who struggle with self-control may find themselves needing hospital care. When ideas and feelings are coming too quickly for a person to properly process them, mania can sometimes feel very frightening and unsettling.
What is the Depressive Phase of Bipolar Disorder?
In many ways, mania is the antithesis of depression.
Those who suffer from depression frequently feel uncontrollable grief or powerlessness. These emotions are not transient and could persist for a long time.
When depressed, people may cry over things that normally wouldn’t make them feel that way. They can start thinking only bad things, or they might keep thinking about things from the past or things they can’t alter.
Even at things they generally enjoy, these emotions could make them upset. Depression may be isolating, and a person with it may purposefully distance themselves from friends and family. People going through a depressive phase frequently desire to retreat and stay at home alone, but during a normal phase they may love going out and visiting people. They might also want to refrain from being intimate with wives or partners.
They might have bouts of exhaustion or confusion. People with depression frequently desire to stay in bed and struggle with protracted tiredness. Simple things like brushing their teeth or cleaning the house can be quite difficult for people who are depressed.
Depression makes it challenging for some people to enjoy or take pleasure in activities that typically bring delight. They could come to believe they would never achieve their personal objectives as a result of their helplessness. It can be a very depressing and challenging moment.
What are the Common Signs of a Mixed Episode?
Sometimes, a person will exhibit symptoms of both a manic and a depressive episode simultaneously. Sometimes, this is referred to as a mixed bipolar episode.
Individuals who experience this may feel depressed or despairing but yet extremely energetic. With their thoughts and voice running, they could feel agitated. Both events occurring simultaneously may seem implausible, but it also can signify that the emotions are changing quickly.
They could feel like they’re on top of the world one second while crying the next. Moreover, the combination may result in unhealthy urges towards self-harm or self-destruction.
What Treatments are Available for People with Bipolar Disorder?
Always seek the advice of a medical expert with experience treating bipolar disorder. It requires continual care because it is a lifelong condition.
The majority of persons with bipolar disorder benefit from a combination of medication and therapy.
When bipolar disorder is identified, medication is almost always required. Some such options include:
- Manic episodes are treated with mood stabilisers that are prescribed.
- prescription antidepressants used to treat depressive episodes.
- Sometimes prescription antipsychotics are used to treat episode symptoms.
It may take some time to find the best prescription for you or a loved one, and open discussion with your doctor is required.
Having someone who can help them manage their bipolar condition is helpful to many people who have it.
Typical forms of therapy include:
- A person can learn how to normalise daily rhythms through interpersonal and social rhythm therapy (IPSRT). This may involve activities like eating and sleeping. Creating a schedule is frequently beneficial for those with bipolar disorder.
- The goal of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is to recognise unhelpful or harmful ideas. Once they are recognised, positive ones can take their place. Those who get this kind of therapy may be able to manage stressful situations and understand what can set off a bipolar episode.
- A type of therapy called family-focused therapy gives a bipolar disease sufferer a support network. They can control their disorder if they have a support system. Also, it provides them with a channel of communication and teaches them how to see the precursors of impending mood swings.
Life Insurance and Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder sufferers may occasionally experience difficulty obtaining life insurance. Nonetheless, obtaining a life insurance coverage is not insurmountable.
You must provide your insurance agent with your medical history and diagnosis in order to begin the process. You will need to make the exchange possible because your medical records are private.
Your insurance company might ask you things like when you were last hospitalised and how frequently your symptoms occur.
Your insurance company may need a month or more to investigate your claim.
You may get in touch with an agent right now if you’re interested in finding out if life insurance is a good fit for you.
Learn More Bipolar Disorder
Visit the World Bipolar Foundation or the National Institute of Mental Health to learn more about bipolar disorder.
Recognize your company. Bipolar disorder affects a large number of people worldwide. You can locate a support group nearby if you’re seeking for someone to connect with. There are numerous chapters of the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance located all throughout the country.
If there are no local support groups near you, they also offer online ones.
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Bipolar disease is not a “mental illness”; rather, it is an emotional condition that we have all gone through at some point. The essence of what it means to live with bipolar disease is summed up in this quotation by psychiatrist and author Dr. Demitri Papolos, M.D. While you may be experiencing a fresh diagnosis, there are many others who have gone through the same thing and can provide invaluable advice on how to handle the disease in both routine situations and times of crisis. Get started right away if you’re prepared to take charge of your mental health.