bipolar disorder symptoms

Bipolar disorder is a serious mental health condition that affects millions of people worldwide. According to the World Health Organization, 40 million people experienced bipolar disorder in 2019. It is characterized by extreme mood swings, which can range from periods of intense euphoria and manic behavior, known as manic episodes, to periods of deep depression and despair, known as depressive episodes.

The condition can have a significant impact on a person’s life if left untreated, but with the right treatment and support, people with bipolar disorder can lead full and productive lives.

The exact cause of bipolar disorder is not fully understood, but it is believed to be a combination of genetic, biochemical, and environmental factors. People with a family history of bipolar disorder are at a higher risk of developing the condition, and certain neurotransmitters and structures have been linked to the disorder.

There are typically two ways someone can feel during a manic episode.

Symptoms of bipolar disorder can vary depending on the type of episode a person is experiencing. Two common feelings

  • 1-During a manic episode, a person may feel excessively happy, energetic, and confident. They may also have racing thoughts, be easily distracted, and engage in impulsive or risky behavior.
  • 2-On the other hand, during a depressive episode, a person may feel sad, hopeless, and have little energy or motivation. They may also have trouble sleeping, eating, and concentrating.

If left untreated, bipolar disorder can have a significant impact on a person’s life. It can lead to problems with relationships, work, and financial stability. It can also increase the risk of suicide.

What treatments are available for bipolar disorder?

Fortunately, there are several effective treatment options available for bipolar disorder. The most common treatments include medication, psychotherapy, and a combination of the two.

Medication is the most common treatment for bipolar disorder.

There are several different types of medication that can be used to treat the condition, including:

  • mood stabilizers- such as lithium and valproic acid, are used to prevent manic episodes and can also help reduce the severity of depressive episodes
  • antipsychotics-such as quetiapine and risperidone, can be used to treat manic episodes
  • antidepressants -such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), can be used to treat depressive episodes.

It’s important to note that medication alone may not be enough to fully manage the symptoms of bipolar disorder. This is where psychotherapy comes in. Psychotherapy, also known as talk therapy, can be an effective treatment for bipolar disorder. Different types of psychotherapy can be used, including cognitive-behavioral therapy, which can help a person change negative thought patterns and behaviors, and family-focused therapy, which can help improve communication and relationships with loved ones.

In addition to medication and psychotherapy, there are other lifestyle changes that can help manage bipolar disorder. These include getting regular exercise, eating a healthy diet, and avoiding triggers such as alcohol and drug use. Regular exercise has been shown to have a positive impact on mood, and eating a healthy diet can help regulate energy levels.

Getting Help Can be different for each individual

It’s important to keep in mind that everyone’s experience with bipolar disorder is unique, and what works for one person may not work for another. Finding the right treatment combination may take some trial and error, but with the help of a mental health professional, it is possible to effectively manage the condition and improve quality of life.

It’s worth mentioning that it is important for people with bipolar disorder to work closely with their healthcare provider to monitor the treatment. This may involve regular check-ins and adjustments to medication doses or therapy sessions as needed. Also, it’s important for people with bipolar disorder to have a good support system in place, including friends and family who understand.


World Health Organization. (n.d.). Mental disorders. World Health Organization. Retrieved January 25, 2023, from