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Bipolar Disorder (BP)
Bipolar Disorder is also known as manic-depression. It is characterized by extreme highs and lows, and severe mood swings, and often prevents normal function at work and at home. This is not your typical case of "the blues." It isn’t the normal cycle of up and down days we all have from stress, too little sleep, losing the lottery drawing, or breaking up with a boyfriend.
Bipolar Disorder is a serious disorder that can result in strained or broken relationships, poor job performance, and poor performance in school or group settings. Symptoms do not go away in a week or two. If left untreated, the disorder can even result in suicide. There have been significant advances in the treatment of this disorder. If you are diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder, and you seek and follow an appropriate treatment plan, you can expect to be productive, and to lead a normal life.
What are the symptoms?
There are two types of Bipolar Disorder.Bipolar I is characterized by severe, debilitating symptoms, with extreme episodes that can include some or all of the following:
Bipolar II is also called Hypomania. Bipolar II episodes and symptoms are significantly less extreme than Bipolar I behaviors.
How is it diagnosed and treated?
Bipolar Disorder is usually diagnosed by a psychiatrist, a specialist, equipped to recognize the symptoms. An accurate diagnosis is very important, because treatment will usually include medications. If the wrong medications are prescribed, symptoms may worsen, or side effects may occur. It is wise to have a medical evaluation to be sure the symptoms do not come from another source, like poor thyroid or kidney function, multiple sclerosis, diabetes, lupus, even sodium imbalance. Bipolar Disorder can also be misdiagnosed as other psychiatric disorders like borderline personality, eating disorders, or schizophrenia.
If Bipolar Disorder is confirmed, a combination of therapies is often used with good results. These can reduce the frequency and severity of episodes. Treatment(s) can include:
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The Warning Signs Of An Impending Bipolar Disorder Manic Episode
Bipolar disorder - as the name implies - involves two distinct set of symptoms. One set throws the individual down into the depths of a massive depression. The other places the individual who suffers with bipolar disorder at the top of a peak manic episode.
Most everyone can eventually recognize the warning signs of an impending depressive episode related to bipolar disorder. More likely than not, individuals with bipolar disorder try very hard to avoid it.
However, for many individuals with bipolar disorder, it's more difficult to recognize the signs of an impending manic episode. After all, a manic episode of bipolar disorder can be mistaken in some cases - especially in the very early formation -- for the lifting of the corresponding mood swing of the depression.
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