Bipolar disorder is a psychiatric illness which is characterized by extreme shifts of mood ranging from elevated mood (hypomania/mania) to low mood (depression). Patients having bipolar disorder have episodes of mania and depression. A person who have depressive episode cannot be diagnosed as bipolar unless patient have one episode of mania in past. Bipolar disorder occurs equally in males and females and usually starts in adolescence and young adulthood. Patients with bipolar disorder will typically have more than one episode.
Patients going through manic phase will usually experience following symptoms:-
Full of energy
Inflated self esteem / increased confidence
Decreased need for sleep
May engage in behaviours like spending sprees, unprotected sex, drug usage
During an emotionally low phase, that is, when going through depression will experience:-
Sadness of mood
Difficulty in initiating sleep
Feelings of guilt may be related to what they have done in manic phase
Feelings of hopelessness, helplessness and worthlessness
If not treated, bipolar disorder can impair ability to have good interpersonal relations, impair performance in job or school and even suicide. However with right intervention and plan one can manage the emotional swings and lead a good life.
If you are thinking that you have these signs and symptoms or may have gone through such phases of extreme emotional/mood states. Then it’s time to consult psychiatrist and clinical psychologists who are working in this field and giving their services, as it is important to treat this mental illness. It is not a condition which can be cured or managed by your own.