The Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar ManBipolar disorder is a condition suffered by many understood by few, it is important to understand this condition in general in order to know how to manage it if you have the disorder yourself or mange your relationship and understanding of people you love suffering from it. Often times people we only thought to have bad personalities are actually people who are suffering from Bipolar disorder, if undetected and left untreated it could lead to terrible consequences. We will discuss the different types of Bipolar disorder and the symptoms to look out for. This does not replace a medical diagnosis, if you feel that you or a loved one may have the condition consult a doctor as soon as you can.

The different types of the disorder ranges from mild to severe: 

1.) Bipolar I

Those who suffer from Bipolar I normally experience a manic episode in their life, an elevated mood and energy, something like overconfidence but more disruptive to normal life which may be accompanied with abnormal behavior. After the Manic episode the person with the condition often returns back into a normal state, it will take time but the sufferer will also go to a state of Depression disruptive to normal life. Varying from person to person there can be a cycle of manic episodes and Depressed Episodes, with normal states in between.

2.) Bipolar II

Similar to Bipolar I, the person suffering from the condition will have episodes of UP and Down. The difference between the two is that in Bipolar II, rather than a full on Mania the patient has a less intense mood called Hypomania, and suffer from depression more often. People with the condition are able to live normally between episodes though.

3.) Rapid Cycling

This is a type of bipolar disorder where the cycle between the episodes are more rapid, the number of episode could be more the 5 a year.

4.) Mixed Bipolar

The person suffering from the condition will cycle the episodes more rapidly and might even experience Mania and depression at the same time.

5.) Cyclothymia

This is a milder disorder compared to those with the full blown disorder, with milder symptoms that appears comparatively less.

Bipolar disorder may show symptoms as early as in the late teens to twenties, it is important to know the general symptoms and know if the diagnosis of a doctor is needed.

Here are some of the symptoms that may appear:

1.) Bipolar Mania could be characterized by the following:

  • Euphoria or irritability
  • Increased energy and activity
  • Excessive talk
  • Inflated self-esteem
  • Unusual energy
  • Impulsiveness

 

2.) Bipolar Depression may be characterized by the following:

  • Depressed mood and low self-esteem
  • Low levels of energy
  • Sadness, loneliness, helplessness, guilt
  • Slow speech, Fatigue, and poor coordination
  • Insomnia
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Poor concentration
  • Lack of interest

 

The quality of life you or your love one has depends on you acting and determining if you truly have the condition and need treatment.

 

Bipolar Disorder in Children

Bipolar disorder or manic depression, as defined in the medical dictionary, is a mood disorder that causes radical emotional changes and mood swings. Individuals with bipolar disorder experience alternating episodes of mania and depression.

Mood swings were assumed to be normal in children because they have not yet developed the skills to control their feelings. However, researchers are now reporting the occurrence of early signs of bipolar disorder in young children. Kids suffering from mood shift of mania and depression are becoming common.

Early Onset Bipolar disorder and its Symptoms

Early-onset bipolar disorder happens at an early age. Adult with bipolar disorder usually experience abnormal intense moods for weeks or months at a time. It is worse in children because they can experience rapid mood shifts many times within the day.

A child with bipolar disorder may be bossy, hyperactive and gets easily frustrated. They are also extremely oppositional and uneasy with transitions. These traits may be easily mistaken for attention-deficit disorder with hyperactivity (ADHD) but it is important to note that children with bipolar disorder tend to display the symptoms much more often. Some of the symptoms to watch for are extreme irritability, rapid mood shifts, hallucinations, and sleep disturbance which is usually coupled with nightmares.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis of bipolar disorder should be performed by an experienced doctor. There are a lot of competent doctors in Portland that can perform a test. The testing is done through evaluation of the mood, behavior, level of energy, and sleep patterns of the child. Tracing family history for depression and alcoholism is an important part of the diagnostic process.

Although there is no treatment for bipolar disorder, it will ease the child to assist him in stabilizing his mood shifts and treat his sleep disturbances. Psychotic symptoms should also be addressed, if present. Once the child is stable, therapy should be offered to help the child understand the illness and how it affects his emotions and behaviors.

Helpful Parenting Strategies

It is challenging and frustrating for parents to deal with children with bipolar disorder but they have to understand that children suffering from this illness don’t have the ability to control rapid shifts in their emotion and behavior. The following tips may help parents to care for their child with bipolar disorder:

  • Maintain structure and routine activities – Children with bipolar disorder becomes irritated with unexpected changes to their activities. It is best to schedule the activities to establish routines and give ample time to smoothly transition to the next activity. Communicate and involve the child in planning your activities to help manage their expectations and avoid melt-downs.
  • Write a mood log – Make a record of your child’s activities and moods to track down possible mood shift triggers and patterns.
  • Avoid stressful situations – Family conflicts and stressful situations negatively affect everyone. Be aware of the situation and always choose to handle stress in a calm manner. The children model their actions from their parents so it is important to teach the kids constructive ways to handle stress and solve problems.
  • Take care of yourself -Be kind to yourself. Get enough rest and connect with your family and friends. You will have a clearer mind and stronger body if you give yourself time to recharge.

Support

Aside from your family and friends, you can join a Bipolar Disorder support group here in Portland to connect with families that share the same experience with you. They can give your valuable advice to better understand the illness and how to manage it. Continuous research is needed to find out more about bipolar disorders in children. Currently, the treatment being done is patterned from adults, even the medications. We know that children is physiologically and mentally different from grown-ups. So, it is a goal to find out ways to address the illness specifically for children. We want to thank the Natural Pest Management company for supporting this cause.

My Best Friend Is Bipolar

It is possible to be friends with someone suffering from bipolar disorder. I did. I must admit that it did not come without a challenge, but a friend is a friend no matter what. Knowing about the disorder helped me to understand why my friend behaves a certain way. At first, I found it weird, but the more I get to know her, the more I understand her condition.

I met Tricia at work. We were working for a company handling pest treatment services in Columbus. Tricia is very warm and friendly that is why I was surprised to find out that she is suffering from bipolar disorder.

I discovered about her disorder from our colleagues. They were saying unpleasant things about her. Perhaps, they were just warning me. I felt compassion in her situation. It is never easy for me to see someone being singled-out.

Since then, I consciously become more understanding of Tricia. She was withdrawing from me, but I genuinely wanted to be her friend, so I persisted. Little by little, she accepted my friendship. Soon, we were doing things together.

It was great when she is in her happy, almost giddy mood. It helps that our work environment in the office is not that stressful. However, random things that can turn her smile to extreme depression in one snap. At first, I just walk-away and give her space. Then, I noticed that it upsets her even more. It takes a lot of kindness to be around her in those moments. I just remind myself that it is in those sad times that she needs me to be her friend.

In her calm moment, she explained to me that her emotions are the same emotions that normal people experience. Sadness is sadness. Happiness is happiness. But in her case, she feels these emotions as if it is all that’s left to feel. These mood shifts can happen without warning over extended periods of time.

I remember that one time we saw a homeless guy on our way home. She cried as if someone dear to her died. She was inconsolable. Two days later, she is still feeling the same. This is just one instance. Imagine cycling through these intense feelings in a lifetime!

I eventually got used to her mood shifts. There are still days that I can’t keep up with her roller coaster of emotions. I get tired, too. But whenever I remember who she really is, I come back to her ready to ride the waves again. She is not the illness. She is my friend. A kind, compassionate and wonderful person. This is the friend I see regardless of her mood.

Acceptance and love can break all barriers. If I listened to office gossip, I wouldn’t have known my best friend, Tricia. She told me that she was lucky to find me. But I must say, I am luckier.

Watch this video to better understand what it feels like having a Bipolar Disorder

The Effects of Chiropractic Therapy on Bipolar Disorder

bipolarBipolar disorder is a manageable yet difficult condition. While there are many therapies and approaches you can take to manage the disorder, there seems to be always the need for large doses of medication that is definitely, but slowly, taking a toll on your body. We have gone through a lot of research concerning alternative medicine and therapies for bipolar disorder and found that there is promising results when it comes to chiropractic therapy, though only as a supplementary therapy it can still reduce the frequency and volume of drugs you need to take daily.

 

Experiencing it myself

After a long time of searching, while in Las Vegas I discovered that when it comes to stabilizing mood through the increase of the body natural production of serotonin, professional spinal adjustment was all I needed. It turns out that a particular section of the spinal column, when aligned properly, could allow the regulation of serotonin levels in the brain, thus stabilizing the mood swings of a person.

When I first hear of chiropractic therapy used for treating a condition like bipolar disorder, I was incredibly skeptical, given that the only way to regulate brain chemistry was through medication. But after experiencing it myself and being thoroughly explained by the therapist, I have come to the conclusion that, though it may not be enough alone, chiropractic therapy is an excellent therapy to have alongside conventional treatment, allowing the reduction of the amount and/or frequency of the medication needed to manage the condition.

Living with Bipolar Disorder After Chiropractic Therapy

spinal-manipulationThere are days that I would feel completely neutral, just like every other person, but there are times when I just feel so depressed and upset for no apparent reason. I found that when having regularly scheduled therapy with my chiropractor allows me to have lesser mood swings.

Though when things get a little worse I talk to my doctor and take some medication, the frequency of this is not the same as it was without the therapy. I also found that I felt overall healthier when I started with chiropractic therapy, maybe because I no longer needed to take as much medication as I used to or maybe because the therapy also promotes overall wellness. In the end I am very much thankful to my chiropractor and my friends who help me research the effectiveness of this therapy.

Thoughts about Alternative Medicine

medicineThere was a time when I was completely skeptical when it came to medication and therapies that had the words “Alternative”, “Wellness”, or “Herbal” in them. But after experiencing a time of my life when I needed, and still need, to maintain some medication, I found that an alternative solution to lessen the amount of chemicals in your body is need. When it comes to health it is best to allow the body’s natural abilities to heal to shine, it is only during situations where you have little to no choice left should you allow drugs into your system.

Interacting With People – Bipolar POV

bipolar-disorderWhen you or a loved one is suffering from bipolar disorder, it would be best to always be notified and notify of any new interaction with people. While people suffering from this disorder could live completely normal lives with the condition, it would be best to keep away from stressful situations that could trigger and episode. Also it would be in your best interest to notify people about you or your loved one suffering from the condition, allowing both parties to be able to interact knowing the situation, avoiding terrible misunderstanding and the possibility of causing an episode.

 

Clarification

By no means am I saying that a person suffering from bipolar disorder is dangerous, it is just best to brief people of the condition and the individual of the event or meeting, to make sure that it is the best time for such a thing to happen. My mother suffers this condition, and I found that it is best for everyone to be brief by the situation.

There was a moment when the girlfriend of my best friend came with us during a visit to my parent’s house, we were handling things in another room forgetting to introduce her to my mother. The stress of meeting a stranger in one’s house caused here to go completely in a defensive position, feeling that an intruder was in her home. This would have not been the case had we notified both parties of the situation, and it seemed as though that my mother was suffering from an episode of that time. We were able to calm mom down when we told her that she was my friend’s girlfriend.

It is cases like these that you need to prepare and notify in advance, it would be nice to be able to be spontaneous every time, but remember that you or a love one is suffering from a condition, and must adjust to it.

 

Possible Cases

More often than not, when you ask for someone in the home services like pest control inspection, you and the company will not have a schedule that you can meet at your home. In cases like these you will need to notify the one staying at home, especially if he or she suffers from the disorder, about the inspection to ease his or her mind about strangers visiting. At the same time it is in your best interest to notify the company and the inspector of the person’s condition, so that they might be able to understand and prepare for handling the situation. Of course the best way to avoid any trouble is by making time for it, but the person suffering from the condition may benefit from this by being able to practice interacting with individuals on their own.

The interaction with new people will allow the person suffering from the condition to grow and become more used to his or her situation. Allowing them to practice this will help them reintegrate into society, becoming one of the many sufferers of the condition living a completely normal life.