Friday, September 26, 2008


Posted by Mark...and also thought of

What Is Bipolar Disorder?

Bipolar disorder, formerly called manic-depressive illness, is a condition that affects more than two million Americans. People who have this illness tend to experience extreme mood swings, along with other specific symptoms and behaviors. These mood swings or "episodes" can take three forms: manic episodes, depressive episodes, or "mixed" episodes.

The symptoms of a manic episode often include elevated mood (feeling extremely happy), being extremely irritable and anxious, talking too fast and too much, and having an unusual increase in energy and a reduced need for sleep. It's also very common for someone to act impulsively during a manic episode, and engage in behaviors that are risky or that they later regret, like spending sprees. And in over half of all manic episodes, people are troubled by delusions or hallucinations. For example, they may think they have a relationship with someone famous, claim to be an expert in an area they really know nothing about, feel paranoid (unusually fearful), or hear voices that are not there.

The symptoms of a depressive episode often include an overwhelming feeling of emptiness or sadness, a lack of energy, a loss of interest in things, trouble concentrating, changes in normal sleep or appetite, and/or thoughts of dying or suicide.

A mixed episode includes symptoms that are both manic and depressive.

No comments: