Friday, June 21, 2024

How Does Someone Become Bipolar

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You’re Just Overreacting Again

What is BIPOLAR DISORDER Like? How Does it Feel?

Overreacting is a symptom of bipolar disorder. Hearing harsh words that would be painful to anyone,;you may well respond with extreme anger or dark depression. Even a sad movie can make a person with bipolar disorder overreact. But you’re not “just” overreacting, and it’s not as if you can always take a deep breath and stop it. Your illness can make that very difficult.

How Does Bipolar Disorder Affect Women

Women and men are equally likely to have bipolar I disorder, but women are more likely to have ;and may experience more rapid cycling between highs and lows.

Women with bipolar disorder are also more likely than men with bipolar disorder to have other physical and mental health conditions, including problems with alcohol use, depression caused by bipolar disorder, thyroid disease, obesity caused by medicines that treat bipolar disorder, and migraine headaches.

Changing hormones during the menstrual cycle and menopause can also affect how severe a womans bipolar disorder is, but they do not cause bipolar disorder.

Friendship With A Person Who Has Bipolar Disorder

It can be challenging to be a friend of a person with bipolar disorder. I freely admit this. I know that my life is difficult for me to deal with and, certainly, it can be difficult for anyone else. Nevertheless, friendship with a person who has bipolar disorder can be just as rewarding as any other friendship.

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Brain Structure And Function

Researchers are learning that the brain structure and function of people with bipolar disorder may be different from the brain structure and function of people who do not have bipolar disorder or other psychiatric disorders. Learning about the nature of these brain changes helps doctors better understand bipolar disorder and may in the future help predict which types of treatment will work best for a person with bipolar disorder. At this time, diagnosis is based on symptoms rather than brain imaging or other diagnostic tests.

Is Bipolar Disorder Genetic

Bipolar disorder and anger: Management and coping

Many studies of bipolar patients and their relatives have shown that bipolar disorder sometimes runs in families. Perhaps the most convincing data come from twin studies. In studies of identical twins, scientists report that if one identical twin has bipolar disorder, the other twin has a greater chance of developing bipolar disorder than another sibling in the family. Researchers conclude that the lifetime chance of an identical twin to also develop bipolar disorder is about 40% to 70%.

In more studies at Johns Hopkins University, researchers interviewed all first-degree relatives of patients with bipolar I and bipolar II disorder and concluded that bipolar II disorder was the most common affective disorder in both family sets. The researchers found that 40% of the 47 first-degree relatives of the bipolar II patients also had bipolar II disorder; 22% of the 219 first-degree relatives of the bipolar I patients had bipolar II disorder. However, among patients with bipolar II, researchers found only one relative with bipolar I disorder. They concluded that bipolar II is the most prevalent diagnosis of relatives in both bipolar I and bipolar II families.

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When A Parent Has Bipolar Disorder

…What kids want to know

Children have a lot of questions when someone in their family is sick. When children dont have answers to their questions, they tend to come up with their own, which can be incorrect and scary!

When the family members illness is bipolar disorder, it often becomes a secret that nobody talks about. All children need some explanation and support, geared to their age, to help them understand bipolar disorder.Each parent and childs beginning conversation about bipolar disorder will be different depending on the childs age and ability to manage the information. You know your children best.This brochure will help prepare you to take the first step. If you have already started talking to a child about bipolar disorder, this brochure will give you more information to keep the conversation going. It lists common questions children have about their parents bipolar disorder, as well as suggestions for how to answer their questions.;

Questions kids have

What is bipolar disorder? How does bipolar disorder work?
Why does my dad act the way he does? How does it feel to have bipolar disorder? What goes on in my moms head when shes not herself?
What does a low mood, or depression, mean? What does it look like?
What does a high mood, or mania, mean? What does it look like?
How will bipolar disorder affect me? How will it affect my family?
How can my mom or dad get better?

Is It Really Necessary To Control So Many Things

In a word, yes. Bipolar disorder is a serious illness that destroys lives. It keeps people from working, it gets people fired, it breaks up relationships, it ruins friendships and on and on. So yes, its worth putting structure into your life to try to avoid those things, not to mention to avoid all the suffering you, personally, would undergo.

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Symptoms Of Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is a mental disorder in which a person experiences alternating periods of depression with symptoms similar to unipolar depression and periods of mania.;Periods of mania are defined by elevated mood and high energy.

While in a manic state, a person can feel very good.;Compared to feelings of depression, manic symptoms may not be especially troubling. Manic episodes can also be infrequent, with gaps as long as several years occurring in between them. When symptoms do occur, they can be mild.

Symptoms of mania may include:

  • Feeling restless, increased activity or energy
  • Euphoria, excitement, “big” ideas
  • Having trouble focusing, getting distracted, thinking about many different things
  • Aggression, getting angry or irritated easily
  • Increased sex drive
  • Delusions, hallucinations

In some cases, a person with bipolar depression may not mention manic symptoms to a doctor or therapist unless, or until, they become severe.

Types of Bipolar

It’s important to know that there are two types of bipolar disorder: bipolar 1 and bipolar 2. While the symptoms of each type are similar, they differ in frequency and duration.

Bipolar 1 disorder typically involves at least one major depressive episode. How it’s different from depression is that people with bipolar disorder have also experienced at least one manic episode. In bipolar 1, people may alternate between periods of depression and mania.

How Does Bipolar Disorder Work

What Does a Person with Bipolar Disorder Look Like?

Bipolar disorder is a psychological condition that causes extreme moods that are difficult to regulate. It typically includes depressive and manic episodes with depressive episodes being more common. Bipolar disorder is separated into two subcategories. Bipolar 1 disorder involves at least one manic episode and may or may not involve a major depressive episode. Bipolar 2 disorder involves at least one major depressive episode with no manic episode.

Manic episodes can cause you to feel euphoric, elated, anxious, jumpy, and hungry. It can also cause racing thoughts, the feeling that you dont need sleep, and delusions of grandeur. In severe cases, manic episodes can manifest as psychosis. For instance, you may have the delusion that theres a wide-reaching problem that only you can solve. Another common symptom is poor decision-making. It can cause you to feel so self-assured that you quit your job and start planning a trip around the world.

At some point, your mood begins to drop. You may feel normal for a while, or you may go straight into a depressive state. Depressive episodes are typically more common and longer-lasting than manic phases. It can cause you to feel fatigued, sad, apathetic, hopeless, or worthless. It often comes with sleep problems like insomnia or hypersomnia. You may also have trouble concentrating or making decisions.

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Types Of Bipolar Disorder

There are three basic types of bipolar disorder; all of them involve clear changes in mood, energy, and activity levels. These moods range from periods of extremely up, elated, and energized behavior or increased activity levels to very sad, down, hopeless, or low activity-level periods . People with bipolar disorder also may have a normal mood alternating with depression. Four or more episodes of mania or depression in a year are termed rapid cycling.

  • Bipolar I Disorder is defined by manic episodes that last at least seven days or when manic symptoms are so severe that hospital care is needed. Usually, separate depressive episodes occur as well, typically lasting at least two weeks. Episodes of mood disturbance with mixed features are also possible.
  • Bipolar II Disorder is defined by a pattern of depressive episodes and hypomanic episodes, but not the full-blown manic episodes described above.
  • Cyclothymic Disorder is defined by persistent hypomanic and depressive symptoms that are not intense enough or do not last long enough to qualify as hypomanic or depressive episodes. The symptoms usually occur for at least two years in adults and for one year in children and teenagers.
  • Other Specified and Unspecified Bipolar and Related Disorders is a category that refers to bipolar disorder symptoms that do not match any of the recognized categories.

A Story Of Misdiagnosis

Willa Goodfellow:

“Home from a weeks vacation in Costa Rica, I was at the office of my general practitioner to get a prescription for a different medication for my depression. I told the doctor that I had spent my vacation entirely in my hotel room ‘maniacally writing.’ While my wife went to the beach, explored neighborhoods, and visited my family who lived there, I just wrote. And wrote. And wrote. I wrote so much that I came home with seven chapters of what would become my first book.

“I needed a new prescription because my first prescription for depression, Prozac, had made me irritable. I also could not concentrate, couldn’t sleep, and my language was coarse. These symptoms had been taken by the doctor to indicate a deeper depression, and so she had originally increased the dosage. But a new problem, a side effect of diarrhea, pushed me to noncompliance. I quit taking the medication, and went to Costa Rica during the period needed to wash it out of my system before getting a different medication.

“But now, at this appointment, my use of the word ‘maniacally’ caused my doctor to pause. Antidepressants can cause people with bipolar disorder to ‘flip’ into mania or hypomania. So she screened me by asking just one question, ‘Are you manic?’

“I answered, ‘No. I’m not manic, I’m excited!’ With that, she gave me the next antidepressant.

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The Stress Of A Bad Breakup Or Failed Marriage

A number of people with bipolar disorder especially those with a history of severe manic episodes have failed marriages. If youre going through a divorce, working with your therapist through what is often a drawn-out and extremely stressful process can help.

You might consider a durable power of attorney that allows someone else to make major decisions for you, such as financial ones, when you are going through an episode of depression or mania in relation to or during a breakup.

In fact, assigning a durable power of attorney could be useful for anyone who might be experiencing an episode of bipolar disorder.

What Is The Treatment For Mania Hypomania And Depression

 3 Effective Ways To Recognize a Bipolar Person

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.

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Reducing The Risk Of Misdiagnosis

Clinicians can take several steps to ensure they are making an accurate diagnosis. The risk of misdiagnosis is still present, but it can be reduced. If you are working with a doctor or mental health professional, there are a few approaches to your assessment they may use to help them provide the most accurate diagnosis possible.

How Do I Get Help If I Think I Have Bipolar Disorder

The usual first step to getting help is to speak to your GP.

It can help to keep a record of your moods. This can help you and your GP to understand your mood swings. Bipolar UK have a mood diary and a mood scale on their website. You can find their details in the Useful contacts section at the bottom of this page.

Your GP cant diagnose bipolar disorder. Only a psychiatrist can make a formal diagnosis. Your GP may arrange an appointment with a psychiatrist if you have:

  • depression, and
  • ever felt very excited or not in control of your mood or behaviour for at least 4 days in a row.

They might refer you to a psychiatrist at your local NHS community mental health team .

Your GP should make an urgent referral to the CMHT if they think that you might have mania or severe depression. Or there is a chance that you are a danger to yourself or someone else.

Your GP should refer you to your local NHS early intervention team if you have an episode of psychosis and its your first one.

Bipolar disorder can be difficult to diagnose because it affects everyone differently. Also, the symptoms of bipolar disorder can be experienced by people who have other mental illness diagnoses. It can take a long time to get a diagnosis of bipolar disorder.

You can find more information about:

  • NHS mental health teams by clicking here.

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What Role Does Environment And Lifestyle Play In Bipolar Disorder

Along with a genetic link to bipolar disorder, research shows that children of bipolar parents are often surrounded by significant environmental stressors. That may include living with a parent who has a tendency toward mood swings, alcohol or substance abuse, financial and sexual indiscretions, and hospitalizations. Although most children of a bipolar parent will not develop bipolar disorder, some children of bipolar parents may develop a different psychiatric disorder such as ADHD, major depression, schizophrenia, or substance abuse.

Environmental stressors also play a role in triggering bipolar episodes in those who are genetically predisposed. For example, children growing up in bipolar families may live with a parent who lacks control of moods or emotions. Some children may live with constant verbal or even physical abuse if the bipolar parent is not medicated or is using alcohol or drugs.

How Can I Help My Child Or Teen

Things not to say to a Bipolar person

Help begins with the right diagnosis and treatment. Talk to your family health care provider about any symptoms you notice.

If your child has bipolar disorder, here are some basic things you can do:

  • Be patient.
  • Encourage your child to talk, and listen to your child carefully.
  • Pay attention to your childs moods, and be alert to any major changes.
  • Understand triggers, and learn strategies for managing intense emotions and;irritability.
  • Help your child have fun.
  • Remember that treatment takes time: sticking with the treatment plan can help your child get better and stay better.
  • Help your child understand that treatment can make life better.

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The Great Thing About A Routine

And heres the best thing about creating a routine in your life its a drug-free therapy. You can even do it without professional help. In a world of side-effects, toxicity, blood tests, weight gain and co-pays, that sounds like a really good treatment option to me.

APA ReferenceTracy, N. . Stability in Bipolar Disorder Requires Routine, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2021, September 28 from



This is the best advice anyone with bipolar could take. I do all these things and I’ve been stable for 10 years now:)Brilliant x

Fran Growall

I’ve given up on this. My brain just won’t work that way. I shoot for basic needs and getting one to three things or progects worked on. I must take my time and be in the moment. This isn’t the real world? Welcome to my world.


Can you give advice about handling a depressed brother who won’t follow doctor’s or therapist’s advice? He is miserable, nasty and makes me very nervous. I have tried helping him over the last 8 years. He has become much worse. I can no longer be a surrogate therapist or soundboard. He makes my Bipolar worse.


This blog is helpful. It helps to find ways to cope up with bipolar.


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