Bipolar Disorder – The 11 Most Frequently Asked Questions
Contributed by: Rachana Arya
Bipolar disorder (also known as manic depressive disorder or manic depression) is a relatively common but serious form of mental illness. People with bipolar disorder experience extreme mood swings, ranging from euphoric highs to depressive lows that typically occur over periods of time ranging from days to weeks. It also causes unusual changes in a person’s energy and functioning.
What you should know about this mental illness:
FAQ # 1: How do you know when a person has bipolar disorder?
There’s one problem with bipolar disorder: it’s a complex disease and more complicated than a simple symptom checklist you can find online for an official diagnosis. Multiple visits over a long period of time are required to demonstrate a pattern of behavior.
The symptoms of bipolar disorder are categorized into:
Some of the seven main signs of mania are:
- Being overly happy or high for long periods of time
- Decreased need for sleep
- Speak quickly, typically with racing ideas
- Feeling restless or restless
- Easily distracted
- Acting hyperactive
- Excessive trust in one’s own abilities up to the point of danger
- Engage in reckless behavior
Some of the seven main signs of depression are:
- Loss of interest in previously enjoyed activities
- To be sad for a long time
- Retreat from friends and family
- Memory and concentration problems
- A noticeable change in appetite
- Severe tiredness or lack of energy
- Thought or attempted suicide, or worrying about death
FAQ # 2: Can Bipolar Disorder Be Treated?
While bipolar disorder can be difficult to diagnose, once identified, it is treatable.
FAQ # 3: Is Bipolar Disorder Hereditary?
As with most psychiatric illnesses, the causes of bipolar disorder are unknown. However, researchers have found that genetics are a major factor in disease manifestation. This means that adults who have relatives with the condition are ten times more likely to develop the condition. This shows that the disease can have a hereditary component.
FAQ # 4: Should I see my doctor regularly for the disorder if my parent has bipolar disorder?
Bipolar disorder actually runs in families. Having first-degree relatives with bipolar disorder (mother, father, siblings, and children) can increase your risk of developing bipolar disorder or act as a trigger for the first episode. Hence, it is a good idea to consult your doctor regularly to keep an eye on the occurrence of bipolar disorder.
FAQ # 5: Can stress trigger bipolar disorder?
Often times, bipolar disorder is triggered by a stressful experience at work or in personal life. A major life change, such as the death of a loved one or physical injury, can also trigger the symptoms. Controlling stress in life is usually beneficial for people with bipolar disorder.
FAQ # 6: Can bipolar disorder go away on its own?
If left untreated, bipolar disorder can lead to serious problems that can affect every aspect of your life, including:
- Addiction to drugs and alcohol
- Suicide or attempted suicide
- Financial or legal problems
- Damaged relationships
- Poor performance at work or at school
FAQ # 7: Can Bipolar Disorder Be Cured?
Although there is no cure for bipolar disorder, most people with the condition can control the disease with the help of psychotherapy and the right combination of mood stabilizers and other bipolar medications. When behavior therapy is used in conjunction with drugs, they have been shown to be effective in preventing relapses and reducing the severity of the patient’s symptoms.
FAQ # 8: Does bipolar disorder get worse with age?
If left untreated, bipolar disorder worsens with age. Over time, a person may have more severe and intense episodes than they did when symptoms first appeared.
FAQ No. 9: Does bipolar disorder harm the brain?
People with bipolar disorder can experience progressive brain damage with any manic or depressive episode. Bipolar episodes lead to a decrease in brain growth and possibly intelligence.
FAQ No. 10: Does Bipolar Disorder Affect Sleep?
Bipolar disorder is characterized by sleep disorders that can affect a person’s mood and decision-making ability. According to the diagnostic criteria, manic periods can show a decreased need for sleep, while depressive episodes can manifest insomnia or hypersomnia.
FAQ # 11: Is there a cure for bipolar in Ayurveda?
Ayurveda offers a wide variety of holistic tools for approaching this mental illness. In combination with meditation and other yoga practices, Ayurveda works on changes in lifestyle, diet and herbs to suit the individual.
Some herbal choices for tonics to treat bipolar disorder include:
Bipolar disorder is a lifelong condition and can be a real challenge for both you and your loved ones – so it’s important to consider your own needs as well as their needs. It’s important to remember that with the right treatment, coping strategies, and support, most people with bipolar disease can manage their condition and live healthy, happy lives.
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