Understanding The Bipolar Disorder (Mood Disorder)

Bipolar disorder is an extreme mood disorder. People who suffer from bipolar disorder often experience extreme changes in mood, energy and behaviour. They switch between two emotions, extreme happiness or sadness. In clinical terms, these are known as the manic or the depressed state.

Manic stage

During manic episode, people often feel like they are on top of the world and can conquer anything. They have an intense energy and can go without sleep for days. People during manic stage are easily angered and irritable, in extreme conditions they may behave aggressively which can be dangerous. Also, People during manic stage may make rash and foolish decisions. For example, careless driving because it is thrilling and in some cases even having unprotected sex with random people because they feel they are immune to STDs.

People with serious mania may have visual, auditory and gustatory hallucinations. That is, they could hallucinate a person, they could hear someone or something and in some cases, they could even taste things that are not really present.

Sometimes people with bipolar disorder do not remember the manic stage, when told about an episode, they feel puzzled.

Some people do not experience full blown manic episodes, instead they experience a milder form of mania called hypomania which is characterized by elation and hyperactivity.

Depressed stage 

The depressed state is the exact opposite, people during a depressed episode may feel sad and empty. They feel hopeless, worthless, guilt and nothing can cheer them up.  They are constantly tired and may lose interest in doing daily activities and pleasures.

Bipolar depression and regular depression are similar, however, there are certain symptoms that are not found in regular depression but are found in bipolar depression. For example, with bipolar depression, you may speak and move slowly, gain weight and oversleep. Bipolar patients may also develop psychotic depression, that is people lose in touch with reality and experience problems in day to day functioning and work.

 

pet-brain-scans-of-bipolar-disorder-mania-depression

                                                      Image source : INQUISITR

 

Treatment Options 

  1. Physical treatment options
  • Mood stabilizers ( lithium carbonate and sodium valporate)
  • Antidepressants (SSRIs)
  • Antipsychotic Drugs
  • Electroconvulsive therapy/ ECT ( Used when other treatments are ineffective)

2. Psychological treatments options

  • Cognitive behavioural therapy / CBT
  • Family focused therapy
  • Interpersonal and social rhythm therapy
  • Group psychoeducation

For more information on treatments, click here

Click the video at the end for more information

 

Reference

Know The Ups And Downs of Bipolar Disorder Symptoms – Bipolar Disorder Guide. (2018). Bipolar Disorder Guide. Retrieved 13 February 2018, from http://bipolardisordersguide.com/know-ups-downs-bipolar-disorder-symptoms/ (Featured Image)

Ruiz, P. (2015). Bipolar disorder. Journal of the Neurological Sciences, 357(s1). doi:10.1016/j.jns.2015.09.291

Bipolar Disorder Signs and Symptoms: Recognizing and Getting Help for Mania and Bipolar Depression. (2018). Helpguide.org. Retrieved 13 February 2018, from https://www.helpguide.org/articles/bipolar-disorder/bipolar-disorder-signs-and-symptoms.htm

Florez. (2018). Study: Antidepressants Can Worsen Rapid Cycling In Bipolar DepressionThe Inquisitr. Retrieved 13 February 2018, from https://www.inquisitr.com/2220683/antidepressants-can-worsen-rapid-cycling-bipolar-depression/

Treatment for bipolar disorder | Black Dog Institute. (2018). Blackdoginstitute.org.au. Retrieved 13 February 2018, from https://www.blackdoginstitute.org.au/clinical-resources/bipolar-disorder/treatment

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3 thoughts on “Understanding The Bipolar Disorder (Mood Disorder)

  1. The greatest treatment is the kind and ongoing support from friends and family. I am fortunate enough to have this, but I do chat to many people who sadly do not.

    Like

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