Continue Learning About Bipolar Disorder Causes & Risk Factors
Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.
There Are Three Main Types Of Schizophrenia:
1. Paranoid Schizophrenia: Paranoid schizophrenia is one of the most common types of schizophrenia. In this, a person becomes paranoid about his or her surroundings. This illness usually starts in childhood or early adulthood. The patients lose trust in people around them. They are continuously suspicious of others. This form of schizophrenia is characterized by delusions and hallucinations.
2. Disorganised Schizophrenia: Disorganised Schizophrenia is characterized by disorganisation of behaviour and speech. A person with disorganised schizophrenia becomes disruptive. The patients have difficulty in maintaining speech or concentrating on a particular thought. Hallucinations and delusions are not common with this condition but the symptoms prevail.Also read: The King’s Speech: Overcoming stammering
3. Catatonic Schizophrenia: The main disorder that comes with catatonic schizophrenia is difficulty in movement. A patient may lose movement completely or become hyperactive. Actions performed may become repetitive. In a state of rigidity, the patient may lose complete touch with reality and not even move a muscle.
The exact causes of schizophrenia remain unknown. But researchers believe that schizophrenia is affected by brain impulses, genetic and environmental factors. Symptoms of schizophrenia may range from thought impairment to behavioural impairment. The symptoms of schizophrenia can be positive and negative.
Does Bipolar Disorder Run In The Family
I just met a woman in her early 20s who I really like. She seems very together but she told me that her parents and two brothers are all diagnosed and on medication for bipolar disorder. I am wondering if something like this will also happen to her. What are her chances of getting bipolar disorder?
First a question of my own: Has anyone found the true cause of bipolar disorder? Wouldnt it be wonderful to know that X or Y was the cause, but the answer is not that simple. Most scientists believe that mental illnesses are caused by a combination of several factors working together. In bipolar disorder, these factors are usually divided into biological and psychological causes. In plain English, the main reasons mental illness develops are physical and environmental.
The first question in relation to what you are asking is: Is bipolar disorder inherited?
As far as the biological factors, researchers are quite certain that the neurotransmitter section of the brain is at least part of the cause of bipolar disorder. However, more research is needed to define its exact role. Suffice it to say that every individual is different, so the inherited biological factors may or may not be present. It is, however, important to note that your lady friend has both parents and two siblings with bipolar disorder. There is a strong indication that she would be quite vulnerable to developing bipolar disorder.
~Dr. Manuel S. Silverman, PhD
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Question: Does Bipolar Run In Siblings
Children who have one parent with the disorder have about a 10%-25% chance of developing the disorder themselves children with two parents with the disorder have a 10%-50% chance. If a non-identical twin sibling has the disorder, the chance that another sibling will have it is about 10%-25%.
Bipolar Disorder In Children And Teens
Bipolar disorders are most common in older adolescents and teens, but children can also be diagnosed with the disorder at a younger age. While not nearly as common in children as it is in adults, research studies have revealed that bipolar disorder affects as many as 3% of all children and up to 7% of children receiving outpatient psychiatric care. Bipolar disorder has been diagnosed in children as young as 5. When young children experience symptoms, this is called early-onset bipolar disorder.
Bipolar disorder is more likely to affect the children of parents who have the disorder. When one parent has bipolar disorder, the risk to each child is l5 to 30%. When both parents have bipolar disorder, the risk increases to 50 to 75%.
Bipolar in kids also causes distinct mood episodes from mania or hypomania to depression. However, because kids and adolescents can act out, have difficulty in school or at home, and display some of the symptoms of bipolar disorders, like restlessness, impulsivity, risky behaviors, and an inflated view of capabilities, even when they dont have the disorder, it can be difficult to diagnose.
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Symptoms Of Mania And Hypomania
During manic episodes, which can cause extreme highs in mood, people may experience:
- a lower need for sleep
- a desire to engage in reckless behaviors such as using drugs or consuming alcohol
- difficulty concentrating or making decisions
- high energy levels and restlessness
- high self-esteem
Seven Classes And The Key Findings That Shaped Them
The seven phenoclasses, as the U-M team has dubbed them, include standard measures doctors already use to diagnose and track the progress of bipolar disorder.
Changes in cognition, which includes thinking, reasoning and emotion processing
Psychological dimensions such as personality and temperament
Measures of behaviors related to substance use or abuse called motivated behaviors
Aspects of the persons life involving family, intimate relationships and traumas
Patterns of sleep and circadian rhythms
Measures of how patients symptoms change over time and respond to treatment
Some of the key findings the U-M team made in the Prechter cohort include:
Although bipolar disorder tends to run in families, the long-term study revealed no one gene explains it, says McInnis, who is the Woodworth Professor of Bipolar Disorder and Depression in the U-M Medical Schools Department of Psychiatry.
If there was a gene with a strong effect like what we see in breast cancer, for instance, we would have found it, he explains. We hope this new framework will provide a new approach to understand this disorder, and other complex diseases, by developing models that can guide a management strategy for clinicians and patients and give researchers consistent variables to measure and assess.
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Does Bipolar Run In Families
While the causes of bipolar disorder are unknown, there are several causes of bipolar disorder, and family history is one of the risk factors. Research suggest that persons whose relatives have the condition have a 10% increase in the risk of developing bipolar disorder.
Consider the following:
A child whose parent has bipolar disorder has a 15 to 30% chance of developing the condition.
If both parents have bipolar disorder, the risk increases to between 50 and 75%.
If one child has bipolar disorder, the risk of another child developing the condition is 15 to 25%.
If one twin has the condition, there is a 40 to 70% chance the other one will get it.
Overall, genetic factors are responsible for 60 to 80% of the cases of bipolar disorder.
However, it is rare for health practitioners to find families where bipolar disorder affects several members across generations. Most cases are isolated, with the disorder affecting only one member of the family. Further, it is possible that environmental factors such as stress and abuse increase the risk of developing the condition.
Its Similar To Other Mental Health Conditions
People with bipolar disorder usually get diagnosed with something else firstdepression and ADHD are some of the most common. Depression is a part of bipolar disorder, and most people are more familiar with what depression looks like than mania. ADHD can also look very similar to bipolar disorder, especially in children.
Once a person discovers they have bipolar disorder, that might replace any previous diagnosisor they might have multiple mental health conditions at once. If you know someone who is being treated for a mental illness, but they still struggle with symptoms of bipolar disorder, its worth considering that there may be more going on.
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Family History: Does Bipolar Disorder Run In Families
More than two million American citizens and 40 million people worldwide are diagnosed with bipolar disorder, but it is still a fairly misunderstood disease, mostly because there isnt only one cause to it, but rather multiple poorly-researched factors that contribute to its development.
What Are Four Possible Causes Of Mental Disorders
What causes mental disorders?
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What Does It Feel Like To Have Bipolar Disorder
There are times when you feel terrific and productive when you are manic, like you can do anything. But you can also feel out of control with racing thoughts and unable to concentrate long enough to accomplish something. When in a depressed episode, you can feel sad, uninterested in anything, and really low like something terrible must have happened but nothing did.
Whos At Risk For Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder affects about 2.8 percent of adults in the United States, according to the National Institutes of Mental Health. Around 83 percent of those people were severely impaired by the disorder while they rest only experienced moderate impairments.
Men and women experience bipolar disorder at similar rates. It also seems to affect all races and socioeconomic classes at similar rates as well. The disorder can begin at any age, but its most common among young adults. According to the National Comorbidity Survey, 18- to 29-year-olds represent the largest group of people that had bipolar disorder in the past year, with 30- to 44-year-olds being the next highest range.
However, the survey only included people 18 years old or older, so adolescents could have high instances of the disorder. Bipolar disorder can occur in children as young as age 6, although its rare, and its a controversial diagnosis in children. If your child is diagnosed, its wise to continually follow up with your medical professionals and get a second opinion. Its more commonly seen in teens and young adults, and the most common age of onset is 25 years old.
Bipolar disorder also has a strong genetic component. If someone in your family has it, then the risk of you having it go up considerably. You are especially at risk if an immediate family member has it, such as your parents, siblings, or children. However, even if they have it, it doesnt guarantee youll get it. Other risk factors include:
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Other Causes And Risk Factors
Along with genetics, there are some environmental factors that appear to play a part in triggering bipolar disorder in susceptible people. These include:
- Periods of high stress: Examples of stressful events that could trigger symptoms of bipolar disorder include a death in the family or being a survivor of rape, abuse, or another traumatic experience.
- A traumatic head injury: Concussion or other types of brain injury may cause symptom onset.
- Alcohol or drug misuse: Substance misuse is common among those with bipolar disorder, and the conditions may trigger each other in some cases. Drinking alcohol and using drugs can worsen symptoms of both mania and depression.
- Childbirth: Some
There are four subtypes of bipolar disorder, each with similar symptoms.
However, the occurrence, duration, and intensity of the symptoms can determine which subtype a person has.
Types of bipolar disorder include:
Is Bipolar Disorder Hereditary
We have known for some time that bipolar disorder can run in families, and now, with genomic sequencing, we are learning about the possible role of genetic factors in the disorder. While the role of heredity is clear from family and twin studies, further research is needed.
Let’s look at what we know about family history and bipolar disorder, and then at what genetic specialists have discovered about the role of individual genes in both bipolar disorder and other mental health disorders.
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Symptoms Of Manic Episodes
Episodes of mania and hypomania are prevalent features of bipolar disorder. While the signs of mania may at first be a pleasant diversion from the dark depressive episodes, the manic phase can also be destabilizing and self-destructive.
- Racing thoughts and difficulty staying focused, easily distracted
- Rapid speech
- Impulsive behaviors, using poor judgment
- Risky behaviors, such as substance use or sexual promiscuity
Box 1 Some Terminology Commonly Used In Offspring Studies
Proband The affected index case, i.e. the person serving as the starting point for the genetic study of a family
Non-proband parent Enters the study through their relationship with the proband they may be an affected or well participant, depending on the study design, but not the initial contact for entering into the genetic study of a family
Unilineal families The disorder is present in one side of the family only: either the maternal or the paternal side, but not both
Bilineal families The disorder is present in both the maternal and the paternal sides of the family
Assortative mating Mating of individuals who have more traits in common than is likely in random mating
Not only does the strategy for recruiting parents and/or offspring vary, but studies differ in the inclusion of any control groups. The mean age of offspring groups included in studies also varies widely , rendering direct interview assessment of offspring difficult in the youngest samples and placing excessive reliance on retrospective assessment of any early childhood psychopathology in the older recruits. Likewise, the nature of the control group also influences findings. For example, offspring studies in bipolar disorder that included children of chronically medically ill parents as controls have shown high levels of psychopathology in the control group as well as in the familial-risk group .
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What The Research Says
The researchers found that people who took the anticonvulsants valproate or lamotrigine had better sexual function scores than people who took lithium or a combination of lithium and benzodiazepines.
In comparison with people who took anticonvulsants alone:
- People who took lithium or a combination of lithium and benzodiazepines had worse sexual desire.
- People who took lithium had worse sexual arousal.
- People who took a combination of lithium and anticonvulsants, or lithium and benzodiazepines had worse sexual orgasm.
Bipolar Disorder Is Challenging To Diagnose
Some conditions, like hearing loss or the common cold, are fairly easy for doctors to accurately diagnosis. Bipolar is a different story, because theres no definitive test or list of symptoms. Despite the severity and prevalence of this condition, misdiagnosis occurs in 60% of bipolar patients seeking treatment.
People spend between 5 and 10 years , on average, before getting a formal diagnosis of bipolar disorder.
The reason: They often seek help when theyre feeling down, then get treated just for their depressive symptoms. This is a problem, because the medication used to treat unipolar depression doesnt treat bipolar disorder, and it may actually make manic symptoms worse.
Substance abuse is another factor. One study published in the journal Bipolar Disorders found that nearly half of bipolar disorder patients also have had alcohol or drug dependence problems, which can mask the underlying mental illness.
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Box 3 Studies Of Offspring Of Parents With Bipolar Disorder: Key Findings
Increased rates of bipolar disorder and DSM Axis 1 diagnoses were reported in offspring
Offspring who developed bipolar disorder often displayed non-specific symptoms in childhood
A typical trajectory for the development of bipolar disorder, reported in 1030% of offspring who reach caseness is: early non-specific symptoms and signs in childhood that progress to minor mood disorders, followed by a major depressive episode in mid-adolescence, with a first episode of mania about 35 years later
Prepubertal mania was rare and when it was reported it tended to be in cross-sectional studies or in retrospective assessments
ADHD rates were high in cross-sectional studies, but rates were either not increased or not predictive of onset of bipolar disorder in longitudinal studies
Dimensional studies suggest that somatic complaints, sleep disturbances, high emotionality and aggression in the context of a positive family history of bipolar disorder may predict progression to illness status
The presence of a mood disorder increased the age-adjusted morbid risk of substance use disorder from 18% to 35%
Whats Going On In The Brain
Up until recently, researchers hadnt been able to distinguish a person with bipolars brain from a person without the disorder on a scan. But science is making some tracks. A 2019 study that looked at the brains of people with bipolar and those with depression on functional MRI scans correctly differentiated their brains about 80% of the time.
The findings suggest differences in the amygdala, the emotion center of the brain, of people with bipolar when they process emotions like sadness, anger, fear, and joy, and could become a marker to help identify bipolar disorder on brain scans. Likewise, bipolar affects brain biochemistry and neurotransmitters in the brain that produce chemical variations such as oxytocin, GABA, dopamine, and serotonin. These chemicals may be unbalanced in the brains of people with bipolar disorders. But as of yet, researchers arent clear on how too little GABA or too many oxytocin-active neurons play a role in the disorder or whether measuring them can help.
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