Wednesday, April 17, 2024

How Do You Know You Have Bipolar Disorder

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Do I Have To Tell Employer About Mental Illness

How to know if you have bipolar disorder

If you have a mental health problem, you might not want to tell your employer about it because you are worried about confidentiality or how you may be treated. However, if you have a mental health problem that is a disability and you want the protection of the Equality Act, your employer needs to know this.

How Do You Know What Type Of Bipolar You Have

The best way to know which type of bipolar disorder you have is, of course, to get a formal diagnosis from a psychotherapist or psychiatrist. But if youre looking at the issue on your own, keep in mind that one of the main differences is psychosis. If you experience psychosis, then youd likely be diagnosed with bipolar disorder type I. If your elevated moods are less than a week, then you likely would be diagnosed with bipolar disorder type II. If you dont quite fit the diagnostic criteria for major depression or hypomania/mania, then you would likely be diagnosed with cyclothymia.

No matter what version of bipolar disorder you have, its important to take it seriously and get treatment. The most effective way of treating bipolar disorder is with both therapy and medication combined.

Talkspace articles are written by experienced mental health-wellness contributors they are grounded in scientific research and evidence-based practices. Articles are extensively reviewed by our team of clinical experts to ensure content is accurate and on par with current industry standards.

Our goal at Talkspace is to provide the most up-to-date, valuable, and objective information on mental health-related topics in order to help readers make informed decisions.

Articles contain trusted third-party sources that are either directly linked to in the text or listed at the bottom to take readers directly to the source.

Can Anxiety Turn Into Bipolar

There is no research evidence that suggests that anxiety can turn into bipolar disorder, says Simon A. Rego, PsyD, Chief Psychologist at Montefiore Medical Center and Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. People with bipolar disorder may experience feelings of anxiety, however, and may also confuse some of the symptoms of bipolar disorder for symptoms of anxiety.

In addition, some of the symptoms of bipolar disorder can also be associated with some of the anxiety disorders, Rego says. And some people may have both an anxiety disorder and bipolar disorder.

So it’s not always so easy to sort these things out, Rego says. It is much more important to seek professional help if youre experiencing symptoms that are causing you distress or interference in your ability to function in life.

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The Keys To Bipolar Disorder Self

Get educated. Learn as much as you can about bipolar disorder. The more you know, the better youll be at assisting your own recovery.

Get moving. Exercise has a beneficial impact on mood and may reduce the number of bipolar episodes you experience. Aerobic exercise that activates arm and leg movement such as running, walking, swimming, dancing, climbing or drumming may be especially beneficial to your brain and nervous system.

Keep stress in check. Avoid high-stress situations, maintain a healthy work-life balance, and try relaxation techniques such as meditation, yoga, or deep breathing.

Seek support. Its important to have people you can turn to for help and encouragement. Try joining a support group or talking to a trusted friend. Reaching out is not a sign of weakness and it wont mean youre a burden to others. In fact, most friends will be flattered that you trust them enough to confide in them, and it will only strengthen your relationship.

Stay closely connected to friends and family. Nothing is as calming to the nervous system as face-to-face contact with caring supportive people who can just listen to you talk about what youre experiencing.

Make healthy choices. Healthy sleeping and eating habits can help stabilize your moods. Keeping a regular sleep schedule is particularly important.

Monitor your moods. Keep track of your symptoms and watch for signs that your moods are swinging out of control so you can stop the problem before it starts.

Should I Tell My Boss I Have Anxiety

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Rights and obligations Remember that you are not compelled by law to inform your employer about your mental health condition unless it poses a risk to yourself or others. If you feel like you cannot speak up then seek support from a professional.

Tell your manager About any changes to your work schedule or duties. For example, if you are having trouble concentrating at work because of anxiety, then it is your right as an employee to notify your supervisor so that something can be done about this.

If you feel like you need help but don’t know who to turn to, then search for resources in your area on our website. We have links to articles, videos and websites that may help.

Stay safe It’s important to take care of yourself. Try not to overextend yourself at work and set reasonable goals for yourself. If you feel like you are about to have a panic attack then stop what you’re doing and go into a room where you will not be observed until you feel ready to return to your job.

Get support From family and friends Are there any colleagues or supervisors you feel comfortable sharing things with? Maybe they could offer you support when you need it most? Remember that you are not alone. Anxiety disorders are common and there are many people who experience them every day.

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How Is Nimh Addressing Bipolar Disorder

The National Institute of Mental Health conducts and supports research on bipolar disorder that increases our understanding of its causes and helps develop new treatments. Researchers continue to study genetics and bipolar disorder, brain function, and symptoms in children and teens who have bipolar disorder, as well as family history in health and behavior.

Learn more about NIMHs research priorities and current studies.

Symptoms In Children And Adolescents

Symptoms of bipolar disorder in adolescents and children can be difficult to detect. It might be difficult to identify whether they experience regular ups and downs, or bipolar disorders symptoms.

Children and adolescents may experience different types of manic episodes than adults, with different patterns. Quick moods swings are common during episodes.

However, severe moods swings that are different from their normal moods swings are one of the most obvious indications for the presence of bipolar disorder.

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Can It Be Prevented

Once you begin to experience mood episodes, you can take steps to help reduce the severity of those episodes and lower your chances of experiencing additional mood episodes. But you cant always prevent mood episodes entirely or keep the condition from developing in the first place.

Future research may reveal more about the specific causes of bipolar disorder and give researchers more insight into potential ways of preventing the condition.

How Do I Know If I Am Bipolar

How to know if you have Bipolar Disorder and how to deal with it

Identifying bipolar disorder is very strategic because there are behavioral explanations that first need to be ruled out. Since the disorder is more commonly seen in teenage years than perhaps someone in their 40s, somebody might be inclined to gloss over symptoms as typical teenage behavior.

If the behavior of manic highs continues to be repeated over time with potentially dangerous consequences or depressed periods lasting longer than two weeks, a visit to a medical professional is in order. A routine physical including blood work can rule out other physical contributors and a full mental wellness evaluation can be performed.

Common Signs & Symptoms of Mania

  • Showing intense happiness or silliness for a long time
  • Having a very short temper or seeming extremely irritable
  • Talking very fast or having racing thoughts
  • Having an inflated sense of ability, knowledge, and power
  • Doing reckless things that show poor judgment

These symptoms may be more manic and an episode may require hospitalization until the person can be stabilized, as in bipolar I.

Common Signs & Symptoms of Depression

  • Feeling very sad or hopeless
  • Feeling lonely or isolating themselves from others
  • Eating too much or too little
  • Having little energy and no interest in usual activities
  • Sleeping too much

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Bipolar Disorder And Other Mental Illnesses

People with bipolar disorder fluctuate between mania and depression. Because it can look like other illnesses, it can be difficult to diagnose.

Folks diagnosed with BD may experience another mental illness at the same time. Possibilities include eating disorders, anxiety disorders, or substance use disorders.

People with bipolar disorder have an increased risk of developing other chronic medical conditions including diabetes, obesity, migraine headaches, thyroid disease, and heart disease.

Below are just a few of the most common conditions that may look like bipolar disorder or may manifest as additional diagnoses. Anyone who has symptoms of these conditions should seek help from a trained medical professional, mental health professional, or specialist.

What Should I Know About Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is a bio-chemical condition that results in an imbalance of the neurotransmitters in the brain. Genetic make-up is thought to play a role but so too are environmental pressures such as your family, work and social environment, stress, injury, illness and hormone imbalances.

Bipolar disorder is characterized by mood swings that can last for days, weeks or even months. These swings range from mild to severe. The “bi” in bipolar disorder refers to the dual nature of these mood swings – from feelings of great happiness and elation to sadness and despair. In its most severe expression, bipolar disorder can result in mania which is defined as strongly held beliefs that you are a famous person, have special physical abilities or knowledge, or that you are invincible. People can experience mania as a euphoric period. Unfortunately, mania is also accompanied by unwise behaviours tied to the false beliefs. These can include spending sprees, risky sexual activity, excessive drinking or drug use, and other reckless activities or decisions. Bouts of mania are followed by the depths of depression where people feel worthless and hopeless. This phase of bipolar disorder is excruciatingly painful. The mood swings of bipolar disorder deeply affect relationships, social and work functioning and can, in the extreme, bring people into contact with the law.

Symptoms of mania can include the following:

Some symptoms of depression may include:

Some Statistics:

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What Is The Treatment For Mania Hypomania And Depression

You can check what treatment and care is recommended for bipolar disorders on the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence website.

NICE produce guidelines for how health professionals should treat certain conditions. You can download these from their website at:

The NHS doesnt have to follow these recommendations. But they should have a good reason for not following them.

What medications are recommended?

Mood stabilisers are usually used to manage mania, hypomania and depressive symptoms.

The mood stabilisers we talk about in this factsheet are:

  • Lithium
  • Certain benzodiazepine medication

Mania and hypomaniaYou should be offered a mood stabiliser to help manage your mania or hypomania. Your doctor may refer to your medication as antimanic medication.

If you are taking antidepressants your doctor may advise you to withdraw from taking them.

You will usually be offered an antipsychotic first. The common antipsychotics used for the treatment of bipolar disorder are:

  • Haloperidol
  • Quetiapine
  • Risperidone

If the first antipsychotic you are given doesnt work, then you should be offered a different antipsychotic medication from the list above.

If a different antipsychotic doesnt work, then you may be offered lithium to take alongside it. If the lithium doesnt work you may be offered sodium valproate to take with an antipsychotic. Sodium valproate is an anticonvulsive medication.

Sodium Valproate shouldnt be given to girls or young women who might want to get pregnant.

How Bipolar Disorder Is Diagnosed And Treated

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Bipolar disorder is a lifelong illness. While some people with BD may have a single episode of mania, often people experience more than one mood episode.

If not treated, BD tends to get worse over time with more frequent, more intense episodes.

The key is to treat the symptoms, so episodes can be managed. Between episodes, people with BD may be free from mood changes. Others may have lingering symptoms. By sticking to a well-rounded treatment plan, it is possible to manage symptoms effectively.

To diagnose BD, a doctor may perform a physical exam and ask questions to rule out other illnesses that may resemble bipolar disorder. To be diagnosed, a person must have at least one episode of mania and one episode of depression. A mental health professional will assess symptoms, patterns in symptoms, and their severity to determine the type of bipolar disorder it may be.

Similar to other mental health issues, bipolar disorder is treated through a combination of things, including medication, therapies, or a variety of other activities. In addition, developing healthy routines including regular sleep, exercise, and avoiding substance use are helpful for people with BD.

The foundation of successful BD treatment involves prescription medications and therapy. The vast majority of people who seek appropriate medical care make some degree of meaningful recovery.

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Severe Fluctuations In Mood

Bipolar children are more likely to have rapid cycling, moving back and forth between a depressed mood and a manic mood over a shorter period of time or even within the same day. Its common to see a pattern of severe fluctuations in mood, energy, and daily routines, which lead to difficulty in functioning in school, with friends, or at home, says Helena Verdeli, PhD, assistant professor of clinical psychology at Columbia University.

How Do I Know What Kind Of Bipolar I Have

  • 5 minute read

There are multiple types of bipolar disorder a disorder known as an affective or mood disorder. The three main types are: bipolar disorder type I, bipolar disorder type II and cyclothymia. Also, there are certain additional specifiers that denote particular types of symptoms seen in each bipolar mood.

Bipolar disorder appears evenly in men and women. Women, however, are more likely to be diagnosed with bipolar disorder type II. Women are also more likely to experience mixed episodes and a rapid cycling version of the illness where the person experiences more than four mood episodes per year.

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When To See A Doctor

People with bipolar disorders usually underestimate how much their mental instability affects their lives. However, it is a serious disorder that is necessary to be treated.

If youre showing signs of bipolar disorder talk to your doctor or any mental health professional. Bipolar disorder doesnt improve by itself. Treatment from a professional can assist you in managing your symptoms.

Suicidal thoughts are more prevalent in people with bipolar disorder, so, if you feel like youre leaning toward suicide, dont hesitate to dial 911, go to the hospital, or talk to your relatives or friends right away.

Differences In Similar Illnesses

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Mental health professionals may need to sift out bipolar disorder from other look-alike symptoms of illnesses. For example, if a child with ADD has insomnia, they will be tired the next day a child with bipolar wont feel a need for sleep, explains Benjamin Goldstein, MD, PhD, a psychiatrist at the Sunnybrook Research Institute in Toronto. Hypersexuality is another bipolar marker, as it is a symptom of mania but not characteristic of ADD.

Code: bphopekids

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Psychotherapy With A Doctor

Psychotherapy is a term for a variety of treatment techniques that aim to help a person identify and change troubling emotions, thoughts, and behaviors. Psychotherapy can offer support, education, skills, and strategies to people with bipolar disorder and their families.

Therapy with family can also be beneficial as the symptoms of bipolar disorder can strongly affect the overall dynamics of a familys day-to-day function.

Bipolar Disorder Type I

Bipolar disorder type I is what people tend to think of when they imagine bipolar disorder . It is made of up a very elevated mood known as mania and a very low mood called depression.

A person with bipolar disorder type I experiences these moods episodically. He or she may experience a manic episode for two months followed by a three-month depression followed by a symptom-free period .

Bipolar Mania

Manic episodes feature at least one week of profound mood disturbance characterized by elation, irritability, or expansiveness . At least three of the following symptoms must also be present:

  • Grandiosity
  • Increased level of goal-focused activity at home, at work or sexually
  • Excessive pleasurable activities, often with painful consequences

The mood disturbance is sufficient to cause impairment at work or endanger the person or others. The mood is not the result of substance abuse or a medical condition.

Bipolar Depression

Bipolar depression has the same criteria as major depressive disorder. Major depressive episodes are characterized as: for the same two weeks, the person experiences five or more of the following symptoms, with at least one of the symptoms being either a depressed mood or characterized by a loss of pleasure or interest:

  • Depressed mood
  • Loss of energy or fatigue
  • Feelings of worthlessness or excessive guilt
  • Preoccupation with death or suicide the person has a plan or has attempted suicide

Bipolar Disorder and Psychosis

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What Have You Learned As A Result Of Your Experiences

Living with bipolar, often for years, teaches you a lot about yourself, about mental health services, about medicationand sadly often about stigma, shame, and discrimination.

Id say for me it was a key driver for learning about mebut also a red herring as I feel I vested too much of my own identity in clinging to the life-raft of the diagnosis as an explanation of my life in my early 20sagain though, there are a range of perspectives:

Brian talks of the possibility of recovery:

Despite what others may tell you, or what you might believe, recovery is possible. I never thought I could be a worthwhile human being and have something meaningful to offer.

That’s just illness speak and the effects of learned stigma. It doesn’t need to be that way.

Anna points to learning about what is important in life:

I have learnt that I am more resilient than I could have ever imagined. I have discovered that there is more to life than getting a degree or a good job. I have learnt that I have amazing friends who never stopped believing in me, even when I couldn’t believe in myself.

Hannah draws on a theme park analogy to talk about assembling your team of helpers:

I feel like I’m riding a constant rollercoaster of moods. There are people who are too scared to come to the theme park, those that will hop on rides with you and those that watch sensibly in awe and sickness from a distance minding your bags.

All of those people have a valid and useful part to play in your life.

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