Should You Disclose Your Bipolar Disorder
Definitely do not tell the person on your first date, Zamo says emphatically. According to Greenberg, not disclosing right away is okay if doing so would be uncomfortable. But, she adds, If the relationship is getting more serious, you should reveal it.
If you think you might behave in a way that is uncomfortable for the other person, says Greenberg, thats another reason to disclose.
Zamo has had that experience. When he discloses that he has bipolar disorder, its usually after hes become feisty and irritated during a low period. Later, hell feel bad about it, and revealing his bipolar disorder is the only way to explain being an ass to them, he says.
Michelle Mallet, 32, of Seattle, describes herself as outspoken and open with friends and coworkers about her mental health. Mallet, who currently works as a chef, was diagnosed with the condition around age 18 or 19. Despite being outspoken about her condition, Mallet doesnt reveal that she has bipolar disorder on a first date.
Understanding Different Forms Of Bipolar Disorder
How Is Bipolar Disorder Treated In A Teen
Treatment will depend on your teens symptoms, age, and general health. It will also depend on how severe the condition is.
Treatment can often help a teen with bipolar disorder get better. But it will take time. Treatment may include one or more of the following:
Mood-stabilizing medicines or antidepressants
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What Are The Symptoms Of Bipolar Disorder In A Teen
Teens with bipolar disorder often have abnormal mood swings. They shift between depression and mania. These episodes often last 1 or 2 weeks. But symptoms may be different for each teen.
Symptoms of depression may include:
Lasting feelings of sadness
Heightened energy level
Uncharacteristically poor judgment
Seeing or hearing things that are not there , or believing things that are not true
Symptoms of bipolar disorder, especially in a teen, may look like other problems. Make sure your teen sees his or her healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
How Is Bipolar Disorder Diagnosed In A Teen
Bipolar disorder can be hard to spot. Thats because it may look like other health problems, such as depression. A teen must have both depressive and manic symptoms to a varying degree to be diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
A mental health provider will ask about your teens health history and symptoms. He or she will also do a mental health evaluation before making a diagnosis.
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Wellness Recovery Action Plan
A Wellness Recovery Action Plan helps you account for important decisions and contact persons you may need if you get into a crisis. The National Alliance on Mental Illness recommends these plans as a means to avoid a crisis or have easy resources to reach out to. Examples of items on this plan include:
- phone numbers of key family members, friends, and/or healthcare providers
- phone numbers of local crisis lines, walk-in crisis centers and the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK
- your personal address and phone number
- medications that youre currently taking
- known triggers for mania
You can also create other plans with trusted family members or loved ones. For instance, your plan can record decisions about who will handle certain things during an episode. It might record who will take care of important tasks such as paying your bills or feeding your pets. It can also record who will manage financial details, such as finding sales receipts or making returns if spending sprees become a problem.
Bipolar Disorder And Suicide
The depressive phase of bipolar disorder is often very severe, and suicide is a major risk factor. In fact, people suffering from bipolar disorder are more likely to attempt suicide than those suffering from regular depression. Furthermore, their suicide attempts tend to be more lethal.
The risk of suicide is even higher in people with bipolar disorder who have frequent depressive episodes, mixed episodes, a history of alcohol or drug abuse, a family history of suicide, or an early onset of the disease.
Suicide warning signs include:
- Talking about death, self-harm, or suicide.
- Feeling hopeless or helpless.
Get more help
Bipolar Disorder Symptoms, causes, and treatment.
Rapid Cycling Signs, symptoms, and causes of rapid cycling in bipolar disorder.
Bipolar Workbook and other self-help resources.
Hotlines and support
Canada: Visit Finding Help for links to provincial helplines and support groups.
India: Call the Vandrevala Foundation Helpline at 1860 2662 345 or 1800 2333 330
|The HelpGuide team appreciates the support of Diamond Benefactors Jeff and Viktoria Segal.|
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How To Know If You Have Bipolar Disorder Adhd Or Borderline Personality Disorder
An estimated 46 million people around the world are affected by bipolar disorder. In the U.S. alone, around 2.3% of the adult population has this condition. Unfortunately, many patients with bipolar disorder are still misdiagnosed.
Bipolar patients may be mistakenly diagnosed with depression or with other severe conditions, like attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or borderline personality disorder . Such misdiagnoses can significantly affect treatment effectiveness and overall quality of life.
While there may be alternative treatments for bipolar disorder that also work well for individuals with ADHD and BPD, it is still best to get correctly diagnosed for a more targeted treatment plan.
Identifying Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder is a mental illness primarily characterized by extreme ups and downs in mood and energy levels.
The extreme mood swings and energy shifts can make it more challenging to make decisions and manage everyday tasks.
Bipolar disorder was also once called manic-depressive disorder. People with the illness fluctuate between very high or euphoric episodes called mania and extremely low and depressive periods.
The two periods of extremes manifest different symptoms entirely.
Extreme highs or manic episodes can last up to one week. Symptoms of a bipolar patient experiencing a manic episode may include:
- Sleeping too much
- Increase in appetite and weight
- Low, hopeless, or dejected mood
- Suicidal thoughts
Diagnosis: Is There A Bipolar Disorder Test
- A physical exam, including blood tests, to rule out other potential causes of your symptoms
- An MRI, PET scan, or CT scan to identify potential abnormalities or changes in your brain structure or chemistry that are linked to bipolar disorder, or to rule out other disease
- A psychological exam in which your doctor will ask you about your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors
- Daily tracking of your moods and behaviors to confirm diagnosis
There are also multiple questionnaires that health professionals use to help make a diagnosis. These formal, researched, and clinically tested questionnaires are designed to identify and clarify your symptoms and assist in diagnosis. Your doctor may or may not use such a questionnaire.
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Bipolar Can Be Confusing To Maintain Our Relationships We Must Learn How To Explain Our Symptoms Triggers And Treatment Plans Clearlyin A Way Our Loved Ones Will Understand This Is Key To Greater Peace Trust And Support
It would be easier for people to understand bipolar disorder if our brains bulged out of the sides of our heads when we became sick. Then someone could see the bulge and say, Oh, Julie must be sick! Her brains are sticking out of her head!
Of course, our heads look the same no matter how ill we are. Yet because people with bipolar dont have obvious physical symptoms, it is often very difficult for others to understand what we go through. In fact, we sometimes dont know what is happening with ourselves! As a result, we need to explain what bipolar looks and feels like in a way that our family and friends can understand. If we cannot find a way to do this, troubled relationships may result. The first step, therefore, is to explain the difference between moodiness and bipolar mood swings or mood episodes.
What Are The Symptoms Of Bipolar Disorder
The symptoms of bipolar disorder vary according to the form the illness takes. A person with bipolar I disorder has typically experienced at least one manic episode, characterized by abnormally high energy, elevated ideas, disruptive or destructive behavior and grandiose ideas. Most people with bipolar I also experience bouts of depression.
Bipolar II is similar to bipolar I, but the up moods never meet the criteria for full mania. These episodes are referred to as hypomania. Most people with bipolar II disorder experience more depressive episodes than hypomanic ones.
The third form of bipolar disorder is called cyclothymia. Cyclothymia is characterized by rapid mood cycles between depression and hypomania that dont fit the criteria for mania or major depression. Many people consider cyclothymia to be the less severe form of bipolar disorder, but it can still lead to erratic and unhealthy behavior and disrupt your quality of life. What’s more, people with bipolar II or cyclothymia have a heightened risk of developing bipolar type I. All forms of bipolar disorder can have potentially dangerous consequences if left untreated.
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First What Is Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder is a serious mental health condition which includes an experience of mood from emotional highs, referred to as mania or hypomania that can last for days to a week, to lows, or a depressed mood which can last for weeks, explains clinical psychologist Dr. Desreen Dudley, PsyD.
According to the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance, 5.7 million American adults are currently diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
There are different types of bipolar disorder, including:
- bipolar I
- cyclothymic disorder
- substance-induced or medically induced bipolar
Your thoughts may differ depending on the type of bipolar disorder you live with.
Does someone with bipolar disorder remember what they say? Yes.
Do people with bipolar disorder know what theyre doing? Also yes.
Many people think that a person with bipolar disorder doesnt have any control over themselves or that theyre unable to take care of themselves or function in society. This simply is not true, says Ikaika King, who was diagnosed with bipolar II when he was 17.
In many ways, we think exactly like everyone else most of the time. Its when we have symptoms that things start to go haywire, adds Gabe Howard, author of Mental Illness Is an Asshole and host of Psych Centrals Inside Mental Health podcast.
People with bipolar disorder may face unique challenges as a result of their condition, but theyre fully capable of leading happy, healthy, successful lives.
When A Parent Has Bipolar Disorder
…What kids want to know
- Guides & Publications
- 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?
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Key Points About Bipolar Disorder In Teens
Bipolar disorder is a type of depression. A teen with this disorder often has abnormal mood swings that shift between depression and mania.
The exact cause of bipolar disorder is unknown. But it tends to run in families.
A teen must have both depressive and manic symptoms to a varying degree to be diagnosed with the disorder.
A mental health provider makes a diagnosis after a mental health evaluation.
Treatment may include medicine and talk therapy.
Other Specified And Unspecified Bipolar Disorders
A person may have bipolar disorder that does not fit within the above patterns. They may receive a diagnosis of either other specified bipolar disorder or unspecified bipolar disorder, depending on their symptoms.
In order to diagnose bipolar disorder, a healthcare provider should begin with a complete medical interview and a physical exam to rule out a physical cause for the persons behaviors.
There is currently no blood test or imaging that can diagnose the condition, but a doctor may suggest tests to rule out other medical conditions that might have similar symptoms.
If no medical conditions or medicines are causing the symptoms, the healthcare provider will consider bipolar disorder. They may refer the person to a mental health specialist.
The best person to diagnose bipolar disorder is a psychiatrist or psychiatric nurse practitioner who specializes in the care of people with mental health disorders.
Prescribers usually treat bipolar disorder with a combination of medications and talk therapy, or psychotherapy.
Because bipolar disorder is a lifelong disease, treatment should also be lifelong.
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Talk With Your Doctor
If you think that you or a loved one has signs or symptoms of bipolar disorder, your first step should be to talk with your doctor. Only a trained medical professional can diagnose this disorder, and diagnosis is key to getting proper treatment.
Medication, therapy, or other treatment options can help you or your loved one manage symptoms and maximize quality of life.
What Causes Bipolar Disorder
The cause of bipolar disorder isnt clear. Research suggests that a combination of different things can make it more likely that you will develop bipolar disorder.
There is a 13% chance you will develop bipolar disorder if someone in your immediate family, like a parent, brother or sister has bipolar disorder.
This risk is higher if both of your parents have the condition or if your twin has the condition.
Researchers havent found the exact genes that cause bipolar disorder. But different genes have been linked to the development of bipolar disorder.
Brain chemical imbalance
Different chemicals in your brain affect your mood and behaviour. Too much or too little of these chemicals could lead to you developing mania or depression.
Stressful life events can trigger symptoms of bipolar disorder. Such as childhood abuse or the loss of a loved one. They can increase your chances of developing depressive episodes.
You can find more information about Does mental illness run in families? by clicking here.
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What Does It Mean For Our Marriage If My Spouse Has Bipolar Disorder
There are two answers to this question. If you spouse fully accepts the diagnosis and resolves to get treatment, you could begin working together and make the marriage stronger than ever. Many people with bipolar disorder have happy, successful marriages.
If, on the other hand, your spouse refuses treatment, you must learn to protect yourself from abuse. Abuse can take the form of
- Verbal abuse
- Financial abuse
- Emotional abuse
- Physical abuse
We offer a variety of resources to help those with bipolar disorder and their loved ones. One of these is our free e-book, Healthy Living with Bipolar Disorder, which covers all of the basic information you need to know about bipolar. View a list of the rest of our programs here.