Bipolar Disorder - Symptoms and Treatment

Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder, is a mental illness shared by millions of people. It can be managed with medication and therapy. Over 5,000,000 Americans suffer from mental illness. This may affect you personally or someone you know or love.

Education is one of the first steps necessary, to raise awareness of bipolar disorder so that your can get the help you need personally or support someone you know who has it.

Education is one of the first steps necessary, to raise awareness of bipolar disorder so that your can get the help you need personally or support someone you know who has it.

Being bipolar can be a very frightening and frustrating condition. Anyone from any background or lifestyle can have this disorder; however, it is also found to run in families. It is a scary sounding condition, but with treatment, many are able to live normal lives.

It is a mood disorder, which affects the mood and emotions of children, as well as adults. In light of much education, it is now understood, that people who are bipolar are not crazy, but have a chemical balance, that with medication and therapy can live normal, productive and successful lives.

There is unipolar which, like depression, which is much more common and more understood and accepted. Unlike Unipolar Disorders, symptoms of Bipolar Disorder can range from low depressives moods to extremely elevated moods, called mania.

Bipolar Disorder Symptoms

A depressive episode is a period when the person is experiencing daily symptoms of depression for two or more weeks. Other symptoms include:

  • Loss of energy
  • Excessive negative self-talk
  • Feelings of worthlessness
  • Confusion with and inability to concentrate
  • Difficulty making decisions
  • Loss of appetite
  • Inability to enjoy any of life's pleasures
  • Persistent thoughts of death or dying or suicidal thoughts
  • Attempted suicide or have a plan for suicide

What a Manic Episode Looks Like

Those with a Bipolar disorder, swing from two major emotions. A person experiencing a manic episode, might at first appearance, seem to be a person who is extremely happy, high or intoxicated. This manic episode is pleasant, as the person feels like they have no problems, invincible and that are on top of the world.

Some people don't like to take medication or will stop taking medication, because it makes their mood more balanced. With medication they don't have lows, but they don't have the pleasant highs either. Other symptoms a manic episode are:

* Inability, or no need to sleep. Can be up for two or three days
* Excessive talking
* Feelings of importance
* Delusions of grandeur
* Acting on impulse, promiscuity, excessive spending or shoplifting
* Easily distracted
* Ability to hyper-focus

Warning Signs

The signs that you or someone is beginning a new bipolar episode, can differ from person to person. It is important to know what the signs are. If action is taken quickly, you may be able to prevent the onset of an episode and prevent hospitalization. Some signs of an episode is beginning, may be and disinterest in hygiene or appearance, a jump in mood or energy level, or sexual interest, hyper-focus or confusion.

Famous People with Bipolar Disorder

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Famous people who are bi-polar  -    Jean-Claude Van DammeMel GibsonRichard DryfussBen StillerNina SimoneJenifer LewisMacy GrayCharley PrideVivien LeighFlorence NightengaleVincent Van GoghWinston ChurchillAbraham Lincoln
Famous people who are bi-polar  -    Jean-Claude Van Damme
Famous people who are bi-polar - Jean-Claude Van Damme
Mel Gibson
Mel Gibson
Richard Dryfuss
Richard Dryfuss
Ben Stiller
Ben Stiller
Nina Simone
Nina Simone
Jenifer Lewis
Jenifer Lewis
Macy Gray
Macy Gray
Charley Pride
Charley Pride
Vivien Leigh
Vivien Leigh
Florence Nightengale
Florence Nightengale
Vincent Van Gogh
Vincent Van Gogh
Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill
Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln

Getting Help for Bipolar Disorder

It is said that many people seek treatment for ten years, before they are properly diagnosed. Those with a bipolar disorder. will more easily be diagnosed if the patient seeks help when manic as well when depressed. A pattern will begin to emerge as your health care profession begins to get a better picture of your mental health history.

Having a bipolar disorder does not have to be the end of your life. There are many wonderful success stories, of people who sought help and are managing their disorder and doing well. Talk to your family to determine if there is a family history of mental illness. This condition does tend to run in families.

Is there a Cure?

There is said to be no cure, but symptoms can be managed with a combination of medication and therapy. Many also use a alternative treatments such as yoga, meditation, EFT, acupuncture and natural medicines in conjunction with traditional methods, to treat symptoms.

Though dealing with mood disorders may be very challenging, continue to work with your mental health professional, until they come up with the right treatments that will help manage your symptoms!

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Comments 6 comments

2besure profile image

2besure 5 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina Author

Yes, raasenstars1, you are right. Education is the first step to understanding and compassion. Thanks for your comments.


rasenstars1 profile image

rasenstars1 5 years ago

We still need to educate the public about bipolar. Getting a job with that diagnosis is extremely difficult. And trying to get my mother to understand the shifts between mania, and depression, and what stability actually is, is a job all on its own. I have been trying for years.


2besure profile image

2besure 5 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina Author

Bipolar disorders are no longer a life sentence of disability. With help many live a very productive life.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 5 years ago from Nashville Tn.

Unfortuantely, this disorder appears to run in families.

My mother was full-blown bi-polar in an era where there was little to no knowledge and therefore, no help available. I became symptomanic in my late teens, as did my sister and brother. It wasn't until I reached my fifties before I was diagnosed and began treatment. I think awareness is the key. Patti Duke was one of the first celebrities to "come out" with this mental disorder.


2besure profile image

2besure 6 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina Author

Thanks. You have a very important job,helping people normalize their lives.


quildon profile image

quildon 6 years ago from Florida

Great hub! I work with bipolar patients on a daily basis so this article is right on the money. And I just love that pic.

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