Depression

Long Road

To Recovery

Bipolar

Everyone has their ups and downs, but with Bipolar, these mood fluctuations are more severe. In the past, experts did group Bipolar with other depressive disorders; however, there is a difference. Some of the treatment can be different and most people with Bipolar do not get any benefit from antidepressants. In fact, in some cases, they can do more harm, often inducing mania and even psychosis.

Bipolar is characterised by serious shifts of mood, energy, thinking, and behaviour. Some are more prone to depressions, others mania.

Unlike other mood swings, the changes of Bipolar are so intense, they interfere with an ability to function and can damage every aspect of someone’s life.It is hardly surprising there is a high suicide rate amongst sufferers.

The cycles of Bipolar can last days, weeks, or months. There are four types of mood episodes, manic, hypomania, depression, and mixed episodes

Manic behaviour might include

· Being impulsive & reckless; spending, gambling, or promiscuity
· Delusions of grandeur & hallucinations
· Hyperactivity, rapid speech, no or little sleep, and feelings of euphoria
· Angry, irritable & aggressive

In contract to the “negative mania”, sufferer’s manic episodes can transpire more positively, with things like creativity and productiveness.

There is a lesser form of mania called hypomania, characterised by productivity, euphoria, and excess energy. Sufferers are able to carry on with their life and never really lose a grip on reality. Nevertheless, their manic episode can result in bad decisions that have the potential of harming career, relationships, or reputation. Left untreated, hypomania can lead to full-blown mania or Major Depression.

The Three Faces of Bipolar

Bipolar I (mania and mixed episodes)

This is the classic manic-depression form of the illness. Usually, but not always, characterised by at least one manic episode or mixed episode.Also involves at least one episode of depression.

Bipolar II (hypomania and depression)

Bipolar II is similar to Bipolar I.However, the high moods never fully reach full-blown mania. Experts call the less intense “highs”, hypomania. Most people with Bipolar II suffer from episodes of severe depression with at least one hypomanic episode in their lifetime.

Cyclothymia (hypo & mild depression) is a milder form of Bipolar.It consists of cyclical mood swings. Symptoms tend to be less severe than full-blown mania or depression.