What you need to know about bipolar disorder

Contributed by Harleen Kaur

Introduction

Extreme mood swings, including emotional highs (mania) and lows (hypomania), are symptoms of bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression.

While someone is depressed, they may experience feelings of sadness or hopelessness, and they may stop enjoying most activities. Your mood changes to mania or hypomania (a less severe form of mania) can cause you to experience happiness, increased energy, or an unusually depressed mood. These mood swings can affect one’s ability to think properly, sleep, stay active, have energy, and make decisions.

Although there is no known cure for bipolar disorder, there are many effective treatments. You can learn to control mood swings using these treatment options, which will benefit both your symptoms and your quality of life.

Types of Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar-I

When a person has manic episodes, bipolar disorder is diagnosed. People with bipolar-I disorder experience extreme increases in energy during a manic episode and may feel like they are on top of the world or extremely irritable. Most people with bipolar-I disorder also experience periods of calm mood, and some people with this condition also suffer from depression or hypomania.

Bipolar-II

People with bipolar II go between hypomanic and depressive phases. Bipolar II disorder is often more restrictive than bipolar I illness because chronic depression is more common in bipolar II, even if hypomania is less disabling than mania.

Cyclothymic Disorder (Cyclothymia)

Cyclothymic disorder is characterized by a persistently unstable mood. People go through mild depression and hypomania for at least two years. Euthymia, or brief episodes of normal mood, can occur in people with cyclothymia, but they rarely last more than eight weeks.

What is the difference between mania and hypomania?

Although mania and hypomania are two different types of episodes, they both have similar signs and symptoms. Mania is more severe than hypomania and results in more pronounced problems with work, education, social activities, and relationships. Mania can lead to mental breakdowns (psychosis) that require hospitalization.

Symptoms of Mania:

  • Unusually excited, restless, or wired
  • Increased energy, excitement or activity
  • Overconfidence and an exaggerated sense of well-being (euphoria)
  • Sleeping less often and talking more than usual
  • Rapid fire concept
  • distraction

Symptoms of hypomania:

  • Symptoms are mild
  • Symptoms last four to seven days.
  • There are no functional limitations
  • Although people may notice changes, you can continue with your routine activities.
  • Taking risks is common.
  • You may have intermittent fatigue.

Avoid these foods if you are going through bipolar disorder

Caffeine

People who experience depression and anxiety should stop drinking regular cups of coffee. The stimulant caffeine disrupts the sleep cycle and makes you feel active. Additionally, it reduces the absorption of important mood-regulating vitamins.

sugar

When we’re feeling low and want a quick pick-up, sugar cravings are tempting because sugar stabilizes mood. If people with bipolar disorder eat too much sugar, they are more likely to have incident and recurrent mood disorders. Eating too much sugar increases your anxiety and depression levels. Therefore, it is recommended to limit the intake of saturated fat and added sugars in food to prevent the progression of bipolar.

alcohol

Alcohol can affect your health in several ways. Drinking too much alcohol can affect your speech, balance, and more. It has been proven that alcohol has long-term negative effects on mood, balance and memory. If you suffer from depression or anxiety, it is recommended to consult your doctor about giving up alcohol.

Processed and deep fried foods

Processed foods can worsen anxiety and depressive symptoms, leading to excess trans fat as well as lethargy, which is generally bad for your heart health. Processed and fried foods are high in sodium, which can disrupt the nervous system. So, eat foods that help you stay active.

Last thought

Despite the extreme mood swings, people suffering from bipolar disorder often fail to notice how distressing their mood swings are to both themselves and their loved ones, and as a result they fail to seek the necessary therapy.

Additionally, if they have bipolar disorder, they may enjoy periods of high productivity and happiness. This euphoria is always followed by an emotional crash that can leave you feeling depressed, tired and depressed.

See your doctor or mental health professional if you experience any symptoms of mania or hypomania. Bipolar disorder takes time to stabilize. You can manage your symptoms by seeking treatment from a mental health professional.

Additionally, you should undergo preventive health checkups. These health tests give a complete report on your health, allowing you to take necessary precautions to improve your health and avoid various ailments.

Book a full body wellness exam today!

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