Bipolar Disorder – Symptoms and Causes
Bipolar disorder is probably one of the most misunderstood of all the mental illnesses, often self-medicated with alcohol and drugs – this disease creates havoc in so many lives. Most people with bipolar disorder don’t know it and have to find out for themselves; when reading a website that lists the symptoms and characteristics of the disease, they are more likely to pick up the phone and call a Psychiatrist. If you believe that you may suffer from bipolar disorder, please seek an evaluation of a Chicago psychiatrist. Too many people with this condition either have no insight to their illness or have difficulty accepting this diagnosis because of the stigma it carries. Too many people have neglected to seek treatment from a misunderstanding of the illness or fear of the diagnosis and have destroyed their lives that could have otherwise been treated and possibly stabilized to live a relatively normal life.
Psychiatrists understand that mental illness is a physical illness and you will never be seen as “crazy” in their eyes. Bipolar disorder is treatable and there is a plethora of ongoing studies to find better treatments for this illness. One study has shown that an anesthesia Ketamine is providing relief from bipolar disorder. This website is dedicated to informing the public of the major mental illnesses, destigmatizing these illnesses and encouraging individuals to seek help. Most importantly bipolar disorder like all mental illnesses are physical illnesses of the brain and one need not be ashamed or postpone seeking treatment for a mental illness such as bipolar disorder. This cannot be over-emphasized. Bipolar disorder is often comorbid with ADHD and if a patient shows signs of one illness they should be screened for the other as well as screening for anxiety.
A troubling issue with bipolar disorder is “nobody wants to accept the diagnosis” so they are not straight forward during the screening and end up being treated for depression comorbid with anxiety and play the roller coaster game. They are picked up with the anti-depressant and almost rocketed into mania, then brought back down to earth with the anti-anxiety drug, sometimes a benzodiazepine. Unfortunately this is due to a misdiagnosis and seldom if never works because it is not treating the underlying illness. Sort of like trying to solve an exponential function with linear algebra.
What is Bipolar disorder, this illness is also known as manic-depressive illness, is a brain disorder that causes unusual shifts in mood, energy, activity levels, and the ability to carry out day-to-day tasks. Symptoms of bipolar disorder are severe. They are different from the normal ups and downs that everyone goes through from time to time. Bipolar disorder symptoms can result in damaged relationships, poor job or school performance, and even suicide. But bipolar disorder can be treated, and people with this illness can lead full and productive lives.
Bipolar Disorder – Mania – Depression
Bipolar disorder often manifests in a person’s late teens or early adult years. At least half of all cases start before age 25. Some people have their first symptoms during childhood, while others may develop symptoms late in life.
What is Bipolar disorder? Good question because this is a hard illness to spot prior to its full manifestation. The symptoms of bipolar disorder may seem like separate problems, not recognized as parts of a larger problem. Again too often treated as comorbid anxiety and depression. Some people suffer for years with bipolar disorder before they are properly diagnosed and treated. Like diabetes or heart disease, bipolar disorder is a long-term illness that must be carefully managed throughout a person’s life.
People with bipolar disorder experience unusually intense emotional states that occur in distinct periods called “mood episodes.” An overly joyful or over-excited state is called a manic episode, and an extremely sad or hopeless state is called a depressive episode. Sometimes, a mood episode includes symptoms of both mania and depression. This is called a mixed state. People with bipolar disorder also may be explosive and irritable during a mood episode.
Extreme changes in energy, activity, sleep, and behavior go along with these changes in mood. It is possible for someone with bipolar disorder to experience a long-lasting period of unstable moods rather than discrete episodes of depression or mania. Shopping binges and hyper-sexuality are very typical symptoms of bipolar disorder. This is the hardest part of the disease because it brings with it immoral behavior, scores of marriages that have been destroyed because one of the spouses has spend the family into bankruptcy and had multiple affairs because of bipolar disorder. These affairs and hyper-sexual desires far exceed the sexual desires of a virile person and as one who doesn’t have bipolar disorder; it is hard to conceive of this behavior being strictly linked to the disease. It is all too common for someone with this condition to be in a psychiatric hospital and have several sexual encounters during the stay.
What is bipolar disorder? Are you starting to get a feel for the horrific consequences of this disease? A person may be having an episode of bipolar disorder if he or she has a number of manic or depressive symptoms for most of the day, nearly every day, for at least one or two weeks. Sometimes symptoms are so severe that the person cannot function normally at work, school, or home. This is one of the areas that is hard in the interview and diagnosis because we all have good days and bad days, some days “the bear eats you and other days you eat the bear”. Probably the most difficult step in the treatment of this disease because the patient being fully transparent cannot truly say if they have had the mood swings that cross the demarcation between being human and subject to good and bad days or true manic and depressive episodes of bipolar disorder. This is where years of training and experience as a psychiatrist really pay off. You will see below how most of us have all experienced these symptoms at sometime in our lives with the exception of maybe the hyper-sexuality. Some of the symptoms include:
Symptoms of mania or a manic episode include:
- A long period of feeling “high,” or an overly happy or outgoing mood
- Extremely irritable mood, agitation, feeling “jumpy” or “wired.”
- Talking very fast, jumping from one idea to another, having racing thoughts
- Being easily distracted
- Increasing goal-directed activities, such as taking on new projects
- Being restless
- Sleeping little, going nights without sleep
- Having an unrealistic belief in one’s abilities
- Behaving impulsively and taking part in a lot of pleasurable,
high-risk behaviors, such as spending sprees,
- Hyper-sexuality, and impulsive business investments.
Symptoms of depression or a depressive episode include:
- A long period of feeling worried or empty
- Loss of interest in activities once enjoyed, including sex.
- Feeling tired or “slowed down”
- Having problems concentrating, remembering, and making decisions
- Being restless or irritable
- Changing eating, sleeping, or other habits
- Thinking of death or suicide, or attempting suicide
Sometimes, a person with severe episodes of mania or depression has psychotic symptoms too, such as hallucinations or delusions. Technically this bipolar disorder with psychotic features. These psychotic features can all coexist with depression as well. The psychotic symptoms tend to reflect the person’s extreme mood. For example, psychotic symptoms for a person having a manic episode may include believing he or she is famous, has a lot of money, or has special powers. In the same way, a person having a depressive episode may believe he or she is ruined and penniless, or has committed a crime. As a result, people with bipolar disorder who have psychotic symptoms are sometimes wrongly diagnosed as having schizophrenia, another severe mental illness that is linked with hallucinations and delusions. Would you like to purchase or lease or take the leads from this site as it matures? Contact us about this arrangement for Chicago Psychiatrist.
People with bipolar disorder may also have behavioral problems. They may abuse alcohol or substances, have relationship problems, or perform poorly in school or at work. At first, it’s not easy to recognize these problems as signs of a major mental illness. There are new findings linking bipolar disorder and DNA. Read the rest of the article Please read the complete article and read more on what is bipolar disorder.