New study claims future bipolar mood swings can be predicted

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A new study carried out by psychologists from Manchester and Lancaster Universities in the UK found that future mood swings of people suffering from bipolar disorder (manic depression) can be predicted based on how they are thinking at the moment reported Science Daily.

The research involved 50 people all of whom had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

The participants were studied over a period of a month. The researchers found that their moods could be predicted even when medical history had been accounted for.

The symptoms of Bipolar disorder can be classified into four different types of bipolar states and these are Mania, Hypomania, Depression, and a combination of mania and depression.  Bipolar is characterised by severe mood changes that can swing from the heights of euphoria to the pits of depression, for some this cycle may happen in quick succession whereas others may remain in the same state for extended periods of time.

“Individuals who believed extreme things about their moods — for example that their moods were completely out of their own control or that they had to keep active all the time to prevent becoming a failure – developed more mood problems in a month’s time” said study lead Dr Warren Mansell, in Manchester’s School of Psychological Sciences.

“In contrast, people with bipolar disorder who could let their moods pass as a normal reaction to stress or knew they could manage their mood, faired well a month later. These findings are encouraging for talking therapies – such as CBT – that aim to help patients to talk about their moods and change their thinking about them”

The findings of this study, which was published on April 19th 2011 in the American Psychological Association Journal Psychological Assessment, could potentially have an impact on future treatment for bipolar disorder as it means that cognitive behaviour therapy or talking therapies could prove to be beneficial.

Dr Mansell and others at Manchester University are currently developing a type of therapy known as TEAMS – Think Effectively About Mood Swings. This improved version of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy for Bipolar sufferers aims to help those with bipolar cope better with their emotions.

A new study is about to begin which will identify who goes on to make a recovery using the TEAMS approach and who relapses. No doubt we’ll be hearing more about this in future.

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1 Comment

  1. khalida bashir
    Posted November 21, 2011 at 5:08 am | Permalink

    excellent recearch

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