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So You Think It Is Bipolar Disorder?

Oct 13, 2007
Bipolar disorder manifests itself by severe high and low mood swings. The manic stage of the condition is the high, whereas the depressive stage refers to the low. The identification of this in its infancy is important to individuals as there is a chance that it can be effectively treated.

A person afflicted with bipolar disorder was once said to be manic depressive. That term is not used as often to describe the disorder today, however. The disorder is often misdiagnosed because its symptoms are closely aligned to those of severe depression. The disorder cannot be cured and is a lifelong condition. A strong link exists between the incidence of the condition in individuals from diagnosed affected biological parents.

Another name given is manic depressive illness, and it is an illness which has significant psychological, social and interpersonal impact on the sufferer and their families. It usually strikes before the age of 35, frequently in the late teens and early 20s. According to statistics, over two million Americans have this condition, which is mainly classed as a mental illness affecting moods and attitude. In the manic stage, the patient may become overly excited and confident, or the patient could be irritable, angry, or violent.

The mis diagnosis often occurs because patients afflicted with bipolar disorder may spend more time in the depressive stage than in the manic stage. Although it can be difficult to accurately diagnose, the condition is said by those who deal with the condition regularly to be treatable.

There is no evidence to show that bipolar disorder could be prevented. However, seeking early treatment and maintaining a stable course of therapy can help these patients to maintain as uninterrupted lifestyle as possible. It is important for people to educate themselves about bipolar disorder, especially if they have a history of mental illness in their families. Its differentiation from non-bipolar depression is vital as the wrong treatment for this problem may actually worsen the course of the disorder.

Because of the difficulty in diagnosing the condition, many victims remain undiagnosed for some time. There are usually a plethora of tests run by the specialists. This is a bonus in one way, as these tests are able to exclude other conditions before arriving at the diagnosis.

The downside of this is that, as various conditions are excluded, the victim and their loved ones are subjected to physical and emotional stress. The other problem is that the battery of tests undertaken only add to the depression suffered by the victim. This, of course adds to the difficulty of diagnosis.

However, once diagnosis has been achieved, bipolar disorder lends itself to some effective treatments to ensure a return to quality of life for the victim and their families.
About the Author
Sharron Nixon is a 44 year old mother of 3 who lives in New Zealand. Check out Sharron's website:
www.sharronnixon.com/bipolar-disorder
to get some interesting facts, tips and suggestions on bipolar disorder.
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