Bipolar Disorder

For Ages 18 and Older

Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition that causes mood swings including emotional highs and lows. The primary difference for Bipolar 1 and Bipolar 2 severity of the manic episodes (highs).

Both types of Bipolar episodes may include the following:

  • Increased Activity;
  • Increased Energy;
  • Increased Agitation; 
  • A Decrease in the need for Sleep; and
  • Abnormally Upbeats/Jumpy and Talkativeness. 

People with a diagnosis of Bipolar are often distracted and have racing thoughts resulting in poor decision-making and risky behavior.

Bipolar 1 – Mania

The highs are called mania in Bipolar 1 with episodes more severe than Bipolar 2. 

A person with Bipolar 2 may need less sleep than usual during a manic episode while those with Bipolar 1 may go days without sleeping. A Bipolar 1 diagnosis generally requires medical intervention which is not always the case for Bipolar 2.

Symptoms of mania often lead to the following:

  • Disruption in daily life and social activities; 
  • Problems in personal relationships; 
  • Break from reality (psychosis); and 
  • Psychosis includes delusions, hallucinations and disorganized thoughts or reasoning. 

In some cases, psychosis may require hospitalization.

Bipolar 2 – Mania

For Bipolar 2, the highs are called hypomania. Some people with hypomania are often not able to recognize the symptoms. Bipolar 2 often leads to being upbeat and energetic which leads to becoming productive. The result is that the patient believes their ability to maintain a high level of activity is a benefit.

Bipolar 1 and 2
Depressive Episodes

The lows (depressive episodes) for Bipolar 1 and 2 are similar.

Depressive episodes generally include the following:

  • Feeling Sad, Hopeless or Worthless; 
  • Decreased ability to Concentrate; 
  • Loss of Interest in Activities; 
  • Sleeping too much or not being able to Sleep Enough; and
  • Fatigue and Loss of Energy.

Symptoms can be severe enough to make it hard to engage in daily routines.

Bipolar Disorder Treatment

Like other mental illnesses, bipolar disorder can be treated, but not cured. Most people with bipolar disorder go on to experience manic and depressive episodes throughout their lives. There can be periods of time when there are no symptoms; however, there is no guarantee that bipolar symptoms will not come back. 

Treatment generally includes the following:

  • Counseling; 
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT); 
  • Range of Lifestyle Changes;
    >  Regulating Sleep
    Daily Exercise; and
  • Medications
People who have bipolar disorder often see improvement in symptoms when they establish daily routines for sleep, exercise and diet.

Suicidal ideations are common among people with bipolar disorder. If feelings start to occur it is important to seek medical care immediately –  988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline is available toll-free at 988 to provide support 24/7.

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Bipolar Disorder Program

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