What is Bipolar Disorder? Symptoms and Treatment

Bipolar disorder which is also called manic depression is the instant shift in the mood of the person from being extremely happy to being extremely sad and vice versa without any concrete cause for the same. The entire behavior, energy level, mood, thinking, etc oscillates between the highs of manic and the lows of depression and the cycles of bipolar disorder can last for days and significantly interfere with the daily functions and activities. The causes for bipolar disorder are not completely known but they do tend to run in the family and the first episode starts in the teens. The subtlety of the symptoms can be misleading and cause misdiagnosis that might lead to a lot of suffering. Therefore, a proper diagnosis is required to treat the disorder.

 
Symptoms

The symptoms of this disorder can vary in each person and everyone has a different frequency, pattern and severity. Some might have more manic episodes while other might have more episodes of depression. Since a person suffering from bipolar disorder executes symptoms of mania and depression both, therefore in a mixed episode, or mania, hypomania or depression the following symptoms can be visible.

  • Feeling excessively optimistic and extremely high or extremely irritable.
  • Grandiose and unrealistic belief in one’s abilities and power.
  • Highly impulsive and filled with impaired judgment.
  • Always feeling energetic despite sleeping very little.
  • Talking and behaving with extreme energy and speed that others can’t keep up with him.
  • Very distractible and always jumping from one idea to the other and not being able to concentrate on anything in particular.
  • Losing appetite which causes you to lose a lot of weight.
  • Feeling very irritable and not being able to express pleasure and other emotions.
  • Having a lot of problems to sleep and not getting a sound sleep.
  • Having feelings of emptiness, hopelessness and sadness.
  • Always feeling fatigued and out of energy to do daily tasks starting from getting up from bed.

 

Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar Disorder

 

Treatment

Once the symptoms of bipolar disorder have been diagnosed, it is important to treat them as soon as possible because these symptoms will progress with time and disrupt the patient’s life and affect his relationships.

  • Long term treatment

The major concern with this disorder is that it is chronic and a relapsing illness. Therefore continuation of treatment is a must even if one starts to feel better. Also, regular medication is required to stay symptom free and prevent new episodes.

  • Medication is not the only Treatment

Since it is a relapsing illness, medicine alone is not useful or effective to control and get rid of bipolar disorder. An entire strategy is required to be built around therapy, social support and lifestyle changes along with medication.

Bipolar disorder is a complicated disease with tricky symptoms, therefore an experienced doctor and a psychiatrist that is efficient to deal with the twists and turns of bipolar disorder should be consulted so the treatment of the patient is not compromised.

Useful Links:

Wikipedia – Brain Disorder