Fluctuating from feeling euphoric peaks of joy and pleasure to enduring devastatingly dark valleys of depression, Bipolar Disorder is characterized as oscillating between these emotional poles. It may even be causing your dramatic shifts in mood, energy, activity levels, and ability to focus on or function in your normal daily routine.
We all have ups and downs, and it is perfectly normal to feel phases of sadness and happiness. But if the highs and lows in your mood have become excessive or unbalanced, these periods of powerful emotion might become damaging to relationships, daily performance, and may even threaten your life.
However, Bipolar Disorder can be treated, and you can lead a full and productive life free from suffering under such emotional extremes. Clearview Treatment Programs in Los Angeles, a Bipolar Disorder treatment center, can help you restore balance and peace of mind.
What Does Bipolar Disorder Look Like?
The main characteristic of people living with Bipolar Disorder is suffering under the weight of two intense emotional states, clinically known as mania and depression. Everyone’s symptoms are different, with the severity of mania and depression varying from person to person.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIHM), more than 10 million Americans have Bipolar Disorder, but because of the irregular patterns of the illness, it is often difficult to diagnose. Bipolar Disorder can occur at any point in life, with more than one-half of all cases occurring between the ages of 15 and 25, and affecting both men and women equally.
If you have Bipolar Disorder, you may be experiencing the following manic symptoms:
- Intense euphoria
- Hurried speech
- Racing thoughts
- Increased agitation or irritation
- Engaging in risky behaviors, including substance abuse
- Decreased need for sleep
Depressive phases of Bipolar Disorder have the direct opposite effect. The signs and symptoms of the depressive phase of Bipolar Disorder can include:
- Fatigue, lethargy, or physical weakness
- Extreme sadness, often leading to suicidal thoughts or behavior
- Sleep problems of either too much or too little
- Low appetite or increased appetite
- Loss of interest in activities once considered enjoyable
- Increased irritability and heightened aggression
- Chronic pain with no known cause
Bipolar Disorder can also include Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), or having moods that change with the seasons. You may become manic or hypomanic in the spring or summer and then become depressed in the fall or winter. For others, the cycle is reversed, depressed in the spring or summer and manic or hypomanic in the fall or winter.
Rapid cycling Bipolar Disorder is a form of mental illness that causes your mood to shift rapidly. Sufferers of this type of Bipolar Disorder experience have mood shifts that occur more quickly, sometimes within hours.
If left untreated, Bipolar Disorder can result in severe episodes of either mania or depression that can be life-threatening.
Treating Bipolar Disorder
Many people with this mental health disorder do not get the Bipolar Disorder treatment they need, but Bipolar Disorder cannot get better on its own. Receiving proper care at Clearview Treatment Programs, with experts who have experience in effective management of Bipolar Disorder, can help you get your symptoms under control, allowing you long-lasting and sustainable health and happiness.
At Clearview Treatment Programs’ Bipolar Disorder treatment clinic, you will develop a specialized treatment plan that best addresses your needs by incorporating the most successful evidence-based methods of therapy and healing. In a calming and restorative environment, Clearview’s holistic approach will allow you to strengthen and develop your understanding of the diagnosis, symptoms, and effective management of your Bipolar Disorder through individual, family-focused, and group therapy sessions.
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Bipolar Disorder FAQs
What causes Bipolar Disorder?
According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), there is no single cause of Bipolar Disorder. Similar to all mental health disorders, Bipolar Disorder is a complex diagnosis and might incorporate multiple contributing factors such as: genetic predisposition or a family history, improper biological functioning, and possible environmental factors including stress, trauma, and biological reaction to stimuli or a detrimental life event.
Is suicide a risk factor for those suffering from Bipolar Disorder?
Unfortunately, if left untreated, the answer is yes. The Treatment Advocacy Center reports that suicide is the number one cause of premature death among people with Bipolar Disorder, with 15 percent to 17 percent taking their own lives as a result of negative symptoms that come from untreated illness. The extreme depression and psychoses that can result from lack of Bipolar Disorder treatment is the usual culprit in these cases.
When does Bipolar Disorder begin?
Bipolar Disorder typically starts in late adolescence or early adulthood, although it can show up in children and in older adults. People often live an average of 10 years with the disorder without having it properly diagnosed or seeking proper Bipolar Disorder treatment.