Bipolar Disorder

September 07, 2020

Everyone has ups and downs in life, but some people experience a disorder which disrupts their work, school, and/or relationships. Bipolar disorder is a mental illness that impacts your mood, energy levels, and ability to complete daily tasks.


There is no single cause for bipolar disorder. Research  suggests  that  genetic  components, family history, and a person’s environment are all factors.

  • Manic episodes – These occur when a person is overly excited and full of energy.  Common manic episode symptoms are:

  • Talking  very  quickly  and   experiencing racing thoughts
  • Being easily distracted
  • Feeling irritable
  • Increasing activities despite a decreased need of sleep
  • Acting impulsively or engaging in high-risk behaviors
  • Believing  unrealistic  or  grandiose  ideas about your abilities

  • Depressive episodes – During a depressive episode,  a  person  feels  sad  or  hopeless. Activities  that  once  brought  pleasure  are now unappealing.  Other depressive episode symptoms are:

  • Lacking energy
  • Having difficulty concentrating
  • Experiencing changes in sleep and eating habits
  • Contemplating or attempting suicide


No one experiences bipolar disorder exactly the same way, but there are two main classifications, Bipolar  I  and  Bipolar  II,  as  identified  in  the Diagnostic  and  Statistical  Manual  of  Mental Disorders (5th ed.; DSM–5; American Psychiatric Association, 2013).


Bipolar  disorder  is  an  absolutely  treatable condition.  A  combination  of  medication  and psychotherapy works well for many coping with the diagnosis.


If you or a loved one is showing signs of bipolar tendencies, know you’re not alone. The following tips will help guide you or your loved one toward help.

For a loved one:

✓ Be there and offer support in any way you can.

✓  Take time to listen and give them your full attention.

✓ Encourage  them  to  seek  treatment  and consider going with them.

✓ Observe  their  behavior  and  never  ignore signs indicating suicidal thoughts.

For yourself:

✓  Learn about the warning signs and symptoms of depression and mania.

✓ Schedule an appointment for a check-up with your primary care provider. 

✓  Talk with your health care providers about treatment options.

✓ Adhere   to   medication   and   treatment regimens prescribed by your doctor.

✓  Practice   self-care   by   eating   healthy, exercising regularly, and getting rest.

✓ Be patient with yourself, treatment plans take time.

If you’re feeling suicidal, don’t hesitate to call 911, or go to an urgent care center or hospital emergency room for immediate assistance.


You’re   not   alone,   and   help   is   available. Consider reaching out to your health care provider   and   engaging   other   counseling resources for guidance on next steps.

What steps will you take today to be well and live life more fully?

Want to talk to a counselor today about this? 

Call us at 800-453-7733 and ask for your “Free 15 Minute Phone Consultation" with one of our licensed counselors. We’ll listen, answer questions you may have, and help you plan next steps.

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