Know about Bipolar Disorder and Get Best Treatment at Medicover

Bipolar disorder is also known as manic depression which is a kind of mental health illness that involves high emotional feelings (mania or hypomania) and lows (depression).
One may feel extremely sad or hopeless when one is depressed, and may lose interest or pleasure in most activities. Sometimes also feel ecstatic, full of energy, or abnormally irritable when mood switches to mania or hypomania (a milder form of mania). Sleep, energy, activity, judgment, conduct, and the ability to think clearly can all be affected by mood fluctuations.
Mood swings can happen once a year or several times a year. While the majority of people will have some emotional symptoms in between episodes. Here you can find all the types of Bipolar disorders, symptoms, causes, risk factors, diagnosis and treatments in detail..

Bipolar Disorder

Types of Bipolar Disorder

  • Bipolar Disorder 1: Characterized by manic episodes lasting a week or more, with or without depression symptoms. Severe mania may require hospitalization, and depression may persist for over two weeks.
  • Bipolar Disorder 2: Features both manic and depressive episodes, with milder mania (hypomania) compared to bipolar 1. A significant depressive episode typically precedes or follows the manic phase.
  • Cyclothymic Disorder: Manic and depressive periods lasting two years or more, with milder symptoms than bipolar 1 or 2. Children must experience both for at least a year before diagnosis, exhibiting mood swings and cycles of normalcy, mania, and sadness.

Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder

The symptoms can be different in mania, hypomania, or depression episodes. Symptoms can lead to erratic mood and conduct, causing severe distress and problems in daily life.

  • Hypomania and Mania: Mania is a more severe episode than hypomania, both sharing similar symptoms. Mania can lead to disruptions in daily activities and, in extreme cases, disconnect from reality, requiring hospitalization.
  • Major Depressive Episode: Marked by severe symptoms hindering daily activities, such as work, school, and relationships. Presence of five or more specific symptoms characterizes these episodes.
  • Symptoms among Children and Teens: Identifying bipolar disorder symptoms in young individuals is challenging, as they may resemble normal mood swings, stress effects, or trauma. Differentiating from other mental health conditions is crucial.

Causes of Bipolar Disorder

There are various factors that can cause bipolar disorders, such as:

  • Differences in biology: Bipolar disorder patients' brains appear to be changing physically. The importance of these changes is still unknown, although they may eventually aid in the identification of causes.
  • Genetics: People with bipolar disorder are more likely to have a first-degree family with the illness, such as a sibling or parent. Researchers are looking for genes that may play a role in the development of bipolar disorder.

Risk Factors of Bipolar Disorder

The following factors may raise the chance of developing bipolar illness or act as a trigger for the first episode:

  • Having a first-degree relative with bipolar disorder, such as a parent or sibling
  • High-stress events, such as a someone's death or another terrible event
  • Abuse of drugs or alcohol

Diagnosis for Bipolar Disorder

Once the person gets the same symptoms mentioned above and the doctor recognises it as a serious mental disorder then the following tests will be recommended in order to diagnose bipolar disorder.

  • Physical examination: A physical check and lab tests may be performed by the doctor to rule out any medical issues that could be causing symptoms
  • Psychiatric evaluation: The physician may send you to a psychiatrist, who will discuss your thoughts, feelings, and behavior patterns with you. A psychological self-assessment or questionnaire can also be completed. Family members or close friends may be asked to submit information on the symptoms with your approval.
  • Charting the mood: You may be requested to keep a daily journal of your moods, sleep habits, or other aspects that can aid in diagnosis and treatment selection.
  • Bipolar disorder criteria: The psychiatrist may compare your symptoms to the criteria for bipolar and associated disorders in the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5).
Bipolar Disorder Treatment

Treatment for Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is a chronic illness. Symptom management is the goal of treatment. Treatment may involve the following, depending on the needs:

  • Medications: To regulate the moods, you may need to start taking drugs straight away.
  • Treatment will continue: Even when you are feeling better, bipolar disorder requires lifetime drug treatment. People who skip maintenance treatment run the danger of relapsing or having small mood swings and growing into full-fledged mania or depression.
  • Programs for day treatment: A day treatment program may be suggested by the doctor. These programs offer the support and counseling you require while you work to control your symptoms.

Treatment in children and teenagers

For children and teens treatment options can be a little bit different-

  • Medications: Children and teens with bipolar disorder may receive similar medications as adults, but due to limited research on their safety and efficacy, treatment decisions are often guided by adult conditions.
  • Psychotherapy: Both initial and ongoing therapy aid in symptom prevention, assisting children and teens in managing routines, developing coping skills, addressing learning challenges, resolving social issues, and fostering stronger family bonds and communication.

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Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is bipolar disorder?

Extreme mood swings, such as manic (high mood and energy) and depressive (low mood and energy) phases, are a characteristic of the mental health disease bipolar disorder.

2. What are the primary types of bipolar disorder?

The main types are Bipolar I, characterized by manic episodes, and Bipolar II, characterized by hypomanic and depressive episodes. Cyclothymic disorder involves milder mood swings.

3. What are the symptoms of a manic episode?

Symptoms may include increased energy, decreased need for sleep, racing thoughts, impulsive behavior, grandiose beliefs, and high irritability.