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Bipolar Disorder Signs and Symptoms

a sad person looks happy in a mirror struggling with Bipolar symptoms

Bipolar disorder, also known as manic-depressive disorder or manic depression, is a mental health condition. Bipolar symptoms are characterized by severe mood swings that range from extreme highs to extreme lows. It is also common for people with undiagnosed bipolar disorder to resort to substance abuse to deal with the intense emotions that they experience. However, a normal, productive lifestyle is achievable through proper bipolar disorder treatment programs.

At Ashwood Recovery, we believe that addressing any underlying mental health concerns is essential to holistic recovery and healing. We offer dual diagnosis treatments that can deal with bipolar disorder and any accompanying addictions that may also be present. If you believe that you or someone you love could benefit from a dual diagnosis, please contact us at 888.341.3607 to learn more about how we can help.

What Is Bipolar Disorder?

A chemical imbalance may cause bipolar disorder in the brain or a genetic tendency for the disease. Patients with bipolar disorder experience radical shifts in mood called episodes. These episodes can last from a few hours to a few days to a few weeks. It also causes changes in energy or concentration, leading to the disruption of day-to-day life.

The mood episodes experienced by a person with bipolar disorder can be categorized into one of the following four types:

  • Manic episodes – These episodes include intense feelings of euphoria or heightened energy. Patients can behave in irresponsible and impulsive ways that may harm their well-being. They may also become highly irritable or aggressive. These episodes last for at least one week and may require hospitalization to manage.
  • Hypomanic episodes – While similar to manic episodes, hypomanic episodes are typically less intense and would last for a shorter amount of time, usually around four days.
  • Major depressive episodes – A depressive episode usually lasts around two weeks and is characterized by a severe depressive mood. Patients may lose interest in activities and withdraw from the people around them. Suicidal ideation may also be present during a major depressive episode.
  • Mixed episodes – Sometimes, the episode may switch between symptoms of other types. It may also be a combination of symptoms from both manic and depressive states, like a heightened energy level combined with intense sadness.

What Are the Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder?

Bipolar disorder may sometimes be hard to identify, especially if someone is high-functioning. One does not need to wait for something catastrophic before seeking a diagnosis. Here are a few bipolar disorder symptoms to watch out for:

  • Feeling overly happy, with episodes that stretch out for long periods
  • Being easily agitated
  • Talking fast, as if their thoughts are racing
  • Being overly restless or very impulsive at times
  • Engaging in risky behavior, such as doing drugs or having impulsive sex
  • Feeling sad for long periods
  • Withdrawing from friends and family
  • Lacking energy and feeling fatigued
  • Having thoughts about committing suicide

If you believe that you or someone you love has one or more of the listed symptoms, it may be time to consult with a trusted psychiatric professional. Living with bipolar disorder is possible with the proper medical interventions and therapy.

Get Bipolar Disorder Treatment at Ashwood Recovery in Boise, Idaho

Ashwood Recovery in Boise, Idaho, offers a wide variety of flexible outpatient, intensive outpatient, and partial hospitalization programs that cater to every patient’s unique needs. Our friendly, qualified staff are experienced in treating mental health disorders and any accompanying addictions through our dual diagnosis programs. We use evidence-based therapies that promote long-term health and physical wellness.

If you or a loved one is dealing with a mental health condition like bipolar disorder, contact us at 888.341.3607 to learn more about the treatment programs that we can provide.