Essay Example on Bipolar disorder also most known as manic Depression

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Bipolar disorder also most known as manic depression is a common recurrent and debilitating mood disorder which causes extreme shifts in energy and mood The word bipolar indicates the two main polar extremes which a person with the disorder experiences According to NMH a branch of the National Institutes of Health NIH that oversees neurological and psychological research this disorder affects about 2 3 million adults in the United States and about 1 2 percent of the population worldwide The first signs of this disorder usually appear in adolescence and early adulthood with cases occurring in childhood Bipolar disorder can sometimes be co morbid with several other disorders including panic disorder social phobia generalized anxiety disorder and substance dependence There are three different types of bipolar disorder most of which are mostly characterized by the presence and or frequency of certain episodes of which there are several kinds Manic episodes normally will last for at least one week and are characterized by persistently irritable and elevated moods euphoria impulsiveness and expansiveness People suffering from a manic episode will usually have racing thoughts and will speak using quick run on sentences They will be noticeably more active than usual get far less sleep engage in several activities at once and be very unorganized in said activities 



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One of the most dangerous symptoms will be excessive involvement in risk taking activities known as hyper sexuality If an episode worsens people may even begin to experience symptoms similar to those of schizophrenia including hallucinations delusions and severely disorganized thinking and reasoning This often leads to the misdiagnosis of people with bipolar disorder as schizophrenics Sometimes the episode will even lead to unprovoked violence towards an object or another person During these manic episodes people will usually not even know what exactly they are doing and will have little if any control over their thoughts and actions A hypomanic episode is similar to a manic episode only less severe The symptoms of a hypomanic episode include most of those in a manic episode with a decreased need for sleep racing thoughts occasional anger and elevated mood However hypomanic episodes are usually not perceptible to others and do not impair a person s social work or family life in any significantly obvious way

People who are going through a hypomanic episode are usually cheerful and pleasant need little sleep and seem to always have an abundance of energy They may even feel a sense of heightened creativity While hypomania sounds in many ways like a desirable condition there are significantly negative downsides Even though hypomania is less severe than mania it can still affect a person s judgment with overconfidence leading to dangerous actions with consequences that the person may not have considered Even more alarming is the fact that hypomania is very difficult to diagnose because those with the affliction are often mistaken for simply having a naturally energetic temperament It is very important to diagnose hypomania because as a stage of bipolar disorder it will eventually cycle into depression which carries with it the high potential risk of suicide 



A major depressive episode will usually last for at least a two week period During this time people with bipolar will become deeply depressed and fatigued experience either insomnia or hypersomnia become indecisive and easily agitated and lose or gain a significant amount of weight They will experience feelings of worthlessness and guilt along with the decreased ability to concentrate and a lost of interest in daily activities that they would normally enjoy The two week period during a major depressive episode is arguably the most dangerous time for people who suffer from bipolar disorder because it is the time when the vast majority of them contemplate committing suicide This can range from the idea of suicide without any specific plan to an actual suicide attempt These episodes are usually not diagnosed when the same symptoms could be connected with the recent loss of a loved one or some other traumatic experience We don t know the exact cause of bipolar disorder and it has yet to be found but scientists confirm that bipolar disorder has a genetic component meaning the disorder can run in families


Some research suggests that multiple factors may interact to produce abnormal function of brain circuits that results in bipolar disorder s symptoms of major depression and mania Examples of environmental factors may include stress alcohol or substance abuse and lack of sleep Credits WebMD Bipolar disorder doesn t have a cure but there is treatment for it When bipolar disorder is treated there s therapy medications and supportive care to treat it There are several basic medications available to those with bipolar disorder However these medications carry an increased risk of mania especially if not taken with a mood stabilizer Some of the more severe cases of bipolar where psychosis is present require the use antipsychotic drugs However these antipsychotics sometimes carry side effects which are just as detrimental as the symptoms they treat Several people have reported that these antipsychotics cause panic attacks mania and psychosis Unfortunately compliance with medications can present a major problem as well as an individual is quite likely to lose the awareness that they need to be medicated during a manic episode


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