For People That Are Bipolar, Suicide Risks Increase Without Treatment

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Also called manic depression, bipolar disorder is a common mental illness that affects millions of people annually.  Symptoms can range anywhere from extremely severe to very mild.  This illness not only affects the patient but can also have a terrible effect on loved ones, friends and relatives.  A big component in combating bipolar disorder is early diagnosis, which can help control this serious mental illness.  For people that are bipolar, suicide risks are high without diagnosis, so it is important to seek medical treatment.

Psychiatrists and psychologists are available to help patients cope with this disorder.  Reports show anywhere from thirty to seventy percent of people that committed suicide suffered from bipolar disorder or some other form of depression.  Although more than two times as many women attempt suicide, more men actually commit suicide.  Because suicidal risks are normally highest early on, the sooner a doctor diagnoses and treats a patient, the lower his or her bipolar suicide risk.

If you suspect that you, a loved one or friend may be suffering from bipolar disorder, seek medical attention for them or yourself immediately.  People with bipolar disease need treatment from trained professionals such as a psychiatrist or psychologist that are specialists in this field.  Although not trained to treat bipolar disorder themselves, family doctors can certainly refer people to bipolar disorder specialists.

Bipolar disorder is a recurring illness that requires long-term preventative psychological treatment and/or medication.  Stopping either of these treatments suddenly can result in a regression back to the depression, mood swings and other bipolar symptoms.  Because the depressive phase can be very severe in people that are bipolar, suicide can be a major, serious risk factor, with more lethal suicide attempts.  Bipolar suicide risks are higher in people in the early stages of the disease; people that experience a large amount of mixed and depressive episodes; have a family history of bipolar suicide; or a history of drug or alcohol abuse.  Some of the many bipolar suicide signs include:

* Always thinking or talking about self harm, death and/or suicide
* Feeling like a burden, worthless, helpless or hopeless
* Looking for pills or weapons for committing suicide
* Severe and worsening depression
* Making or changing a will, getting loose ends and affairs in order

Call a suicide hotline, your doctor or local hospital if you or a loved one is having thoughts of suicide because it could be a matter of life or death. Whether you’re currently under treatment or not  signs of worsening or new conditions need to be addressed immediately.

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