People in Columbia who are living with bipolar disorder may find it difficult performing day-to-day tasks, even if they are physically not disabled. For those who do not have bipolar, it may be difficult to understand why someone with that mental illness seems to have such severe mood swings. Their behavior may seem strange or disturbing without a greater understanding of how bipolar affects your mental processes.
In today’s blog post, we will provide a brief overview of bipolar and how it is treated.
Many readers may know bipolar disorder as manic depression. It is a mental illness that is best known for causing the person to alternate between euphoria and deep despair. There are actually three forms of the disorder. They are:
- Bipolar I Disorder. In this category, the mood swings are severe enough that they interfere with your relationships and your ability to work. Many people with bipolar I may qualify for Social Security Disability insurance.
- Bipolar II Disorder. A less severe version of the illness. People with bipolar II experience hypomania, a milder form of mania, but the periods of depression may last longer.
- Cyclothymic Disorder.The highs and lows are not as severe as in bipolar II.
As suggested above, these three versions of bipolar have similar symptoms, with varying degrees of severity. During a manic episode, a bipolar person may experience racing thoughts, rapid speech, grandiose feelings and poor judgment. They may have less need for sleep, and might go on a spending spree.
After a period of time, the mania ends and the patient goes into a depressive phase. Common symptoms during this phase include feelings of hopelessness, attention problems and thoughts of suicide.
Bipolar disorder can be inherited genetically, or it can be triggered by a brain chemical imbalance or trauma. There is no cure, but it can be controlled for some people using medication and talk therapy.
Source: Psych Central, “Understanding Bipolar Disorder,” Helen Nieves, June 3, 2014