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Hypersexuality and Hyposexuality in Bipolar Disorder

Updated on July 4, 2016

People who suffer from Bipolar Disorder often have hyposexuality during their crash periods and hypersexuality during their manic periods.

Sexuality is something that all people deal with in various degrees. However, someone who suffers from Bipolar Disorder may have more severe extremes.


While in a manic state, someone who suffers from Bipolar Disorder may also suffer from hypersexuality. This is a “condition in which there is an excessive or insatiable need for sexual activity with little or no emotion satisfaction and little or no sexual gratification,” according to Sexual Definitions on

Hypersexuality is increased during a bipolar manic state when a person feels like they are superhuman and nothing can hurt them. Sexual promiscuity and infidelities are often the result of this manic state and the hypersexuality combined. Loved ones must remember that there is little the suffer can do to stop their behavior.

Hypersexuality acts just like a drug in the system of an abuser. The idea of the sexual encounter brings a high that will lead the suffer to travel great distances to be with someone they deem okay or to pick up a total stranger at a bar for a one night stand when they have never done this before. Sometimes the sex act actually increases the “high” and as the sufferer crashes from the manic state moves into a great depression realizing what they have done.

Hypersexuality can also lead to life threatening behaviors as the chance of having sex with someone who is infected with AIDS, or for that matter any sexual disease, increases dramatically. Because the sufferer feels superhuman, they feel no need to practice safe sex and often don’t even take their birth control pills which can lead to an unplanned pregnancy.


Hyposexuality is the exact opposite with a total lack of sex interest. This can lead to failed relationships with former sexual partners who feel like they are no longer wanted or loved. This can also lead to a feeling of depression. That’s a catch 22, though. Depression can be a cause for hyposexuality which can cause greater depression. Therefore, hyposexuality should be treated by a doctor just as Hypersexuality should.

The depression and loss of relationships can lead to other problems as well. Those who are depressed have more physical illnesses and need to see a doctor more often. Buying the medications and paying doctor bills can lead to financial hardship.

Getting Help

Anyone who suffers from symptoms of Bipolar Disorder needs to be under a doctor’s care. When symptoms of hypersexuality or hyposexuality appear, the doctor needs to be aware so that he can help get the sufferer through the tough times. There are medications and therapies that can help maintain a healthy sex life in those with Bipolar Disorder. Doctors can also help explain to loved ones the behaviors that can hurt relationships.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for educational purposes only and should not be used for diagnosis or to guide treatment without the opinion of a health professional. Any reader who is concerned about his or her health should contact a doctor for advice.


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