Bipolar Depression And Mania

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Bipolar disorder is typified by alternating periods of depression and mania.  There is at the very least one manic period in a genuine case of bipolar disorder. Depression is the aspect of bipolar disorder that is in opposition to the manic episodes.

The unique aspect of bipolar disorder is this presence of two very contradictory mood states.  While this disorder may seem obvious on the surface, because of its cyclical nature it can be hard to recognize.  The patterns and the amount of time between differing phases can vary from one person to the next.  Knowing the symptoms can help.

A Difficult Diagnosis

The problem with diagnosing bipolar disorder lies both in its cyclical nature and in the perceptions of the patient.  The manic phase may be enjoyable to the patient who, therefore, may not wish to seek help.

Additionally, its symptoms can easily be mistaken for other psychological conditions, most notably as depression during the depressed periods of this affliction.  When the condition is not treated it can worsen and spiral into periods of clinical depression and mania.

Symptoms Of The Depressed Stage

The symptoms of depression in an individual with bipolar disorder are very similar to depression symptoms in someone with depression as a stand-alone diagnosis.  The individual’s mood state is consistently sad, anxious, or blank and empty.

The individual is likely to feel hopeless and worthless.  There is a general loss of interest in daily activities.  There is a loss of energy and of concentration.  There are typically changes in sleep patterns.  This may be accompanied by changes in weight prompted by a change in appetite.

Symptoms Of The Manic Stage

The manic stage is often characterized by excessive energy and a euphoric feeling.  The patient may become irritable.  There may be a decrease in the amount of sleep the patients receives and requires as well as increased energy that results in talking and thinking very quickly as if in a highly agitated state.

The manic stage often also has the patient exhibiting poor judgement and being in denial of the possible dangers of the manic state.  The patient may have an increase in sex drive as well while being more prone to risk-taking behaviours.

Bipolar disorder is a disorder of opposites.  The practice of alternating from a state typified by excessive energy and boundless confidence to one of extremely low energy and feelings of hopelessness can easily leave one feeling confused.  By recognizing the warning signs of bipolar depression and bipolar mania, one can help to correctly diagnose this disorder so that proper treatment may be found.

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