What is Bipolar Disorder?
Previously referred to as manic depression, bipolar disorder is a mental health condition that can cause extreme and sudden mood swings. These include emotional highs, called mania or hypomania, and emotional lows, or depressive episodes.
When left untreated, this condition can gradually worsen over time. It is currently estimated that, within the U.S., 2.8% of the adult population currently has bipolar disorder.
Understanding the Spectrum of Bipolar Disorder
Most people do not know that there is a full spectrum involved in bipolar disorder. The most common forms of this condition are bipolar I and bipolar II disorder, each of which present different symptoms.
In bipolar I, the manias, or extreme highs, are often clearer and more frequent. These may result in hospitalization, as the manic episodes can become a danger both to the person experiencing them, as well as those around them.
Bipolar II disorder individuals primarily experience depressive episodes. While most people will still experience both highs and lows, the lows are stronger. They are more frequent and have a larger effect on the individual’s daily life.
Cyclothymia, or cyclothymic disorder, lands somewhere in-between these two conditions. While an individual with cyclothymic disorder may experience frequent high and lows similar to those of bipolar I disorder, they are less intense and rarely debilitating.
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Most Common Bipolar Disorder Symptoms and Signs
Individuals with any form of this condition may experience a range of symptoms of bipolar disorder. However, there are several common signs that indicate that someone may have this condition. When experiencing a depressive episode, these symptoms may include:
- Extreme mood swings
- Feelings of hopelessness
- Thoughts of suicide
- Low energy or difficulty sleeping or focusing due to mood swings
- Lack of interest in most activities
- Feeling empty or experiencing low self-worth
- Feeling guilty or extremely pessimistic
- Decreased appetite
- Hallucinations and other delusions
When experiencing a manic episode, this may produce symptoms such as:
- Feeling elated, happy, or hopeful
- Rapid speaking
- High energy levels
- Inflated sense of self-importance
- Easily distracted, irritated, or agitated
- Suddenly having great ideas or plans
- Decreased need for sleep
- Decreased appetite
- Poor judgment
- Engaging in risky or extreme activities with little concern for the consequences
How Do I Know If I am Bipolar?
It can be hard to determine if someone may be bipolar, especially when attempting to identify this condition in yourself. However, knowing how to identify the signs and symptoms of this condition is a start.
You can also ask trusted friends and family members whether they have noticed you presenting any bipolar symptoms or other behavioral health problems. Furthermore, if you have a family history of manic depressive illness, this may increase your own risk of developing this condition.
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The Risks Associated with Manic and Depressive Symptoms
There are several additional negative effects associated with experiencing manic and depressive episodes which extend past the emotional toll they may have on individuals with bipolar disorder.
When experiencing depressive episodes, some people with extreme forms of this mental illness end up being hospitalized to prevent them from acting on possible suicidal ideations. In some cases, a depressive episode can last for up to two weeks.
In the case of manic episodes, individuals may also be more prone to engaging in dangerous and irresponsible behaviors due to their unstable mood. This may include spending large amounts of money, having unsafe sex, or other risky activities.
Both depressive and manic episodes may also increase a person’s likelihood of substance abuse. In these cases, their rapid cycling from a depressive to manic state may cause a bipolar individual to attempt to self-medicate with drugs and alcohol.
Furthermore, mania can reduce a person’s ability to make sound judgements and decisions, making them more prone to developing an addiction from reckless use of drugs and alcohol.
Causes of Bipolar Disorder
The exact causes of why bipolar disorder occurs are not yet fully understood. However, there are some factors that are known to play a role in the development of this condition. For starters, a family history of bipolar disorder will increase a person’s risk of also having this disorder.
Another factor is having additional mental or behavioral health conditions. These include anxiety disorders, as well as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Furthermore, just as bipolarism may cause addiction, this condition can also be triggered by substance abuse.
Because drugs and alcohol can alter the chemical structure of a person’s brain, someone who is struggling with addiction will be more prone to developing this and other mental conditions.
Overcoming Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder often starts in your teenage years or early adulthood. For those who express these signs at an early age, they will likely worsen as they become adults. Unfortunately, accurately identifying and getting help for this condition can be quite difficult.
This is because many people acknowledge bipolar individuals as being purposely reckless or ‘flaky.’ However, these extreme behaviors and mood swings are not the fault of a person with this disorder. They are struggling with something that is difficult to control.
Overcoming bipolar disorder often requires a life-long effort. However, with the right treatment plan, a person with this condition can achieve the ability to live their best life possible.
This will likely include recovering at a bipolar treatment center, or seeking out other behavioral health treatment options. For those with simultaneous substance use and bipolar disorders, or co-occurring disorders, this will include dual diagnosis treatment.
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Where to Find Help for Bipolar Disorder?
Bipolar disorder can be debilitating, but finding the right treatment options can help you or a loved one learn to manage this. At the Emerald Isle rehab facilities in Surprise and Sun City, Arizona, you can find comprehensive care in this healing process and achieve a new life.
You do not have to be an Arizona resident to recover at our treatment center. In fact, many of our patients come from out-of-state. Many people travel to receive behavioral health treatment, believing a change in scenery may be just what they need for a smooth recovery.
Whatever your situation, we are here to provide treatment options for all of your recovery needs. Our state-of-the-art rehab facilities feature a staff of dedicated therapists and licensed medical professionals to provide the support and comfort you need during your treatment process.
So don’t spend any more time guessing or wondering. Call Emerald Isle today, and we can schedule a complimentary assessment to the type and severity of your disorder, and begin developing your personalized care plan.
How Treating Bipolar Disorder in Arizona Can Help You
A combination of treatment methods is typically best for overcoming mental health conditions. This is particularly true for those struggling with co-occurring disorders.
Consistent therapies, management techniques, and medication management help a large majority of individuals learn healthier coping skills and ways of living with their disorder; meaning that, with the right help, you can too.
Both the Emerald Isle Sun City and Surprise locations feature comprehensive mental health treatment services. With support and guidance, recovery becomes easier. That is why we offer various therapies, holistic remedies, and educational methods to improve your mental health.
Each of the following promotes mental health and bipolar disorder improvement:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
- Individual psychotherapy
- Group therapy
- Family therapy
- Exercise classes (yoga, meditation, recreation, etc.)
- Mindfulness and stress management training
The Healing Effects of Behavioral Therapy
The various therapeutic services offered by our treatment facilities are backed by years of research and successful implementation. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, for example, has been found to be extremely effective in treating dual diagnosis individuals.
This process guides you in identifying and correcting damaging thoughts and behaviors, giving you a better understanding of and ability to manage your specific mental condition. Those who utilize this form of therapy often report significant improvement in their depressive symptoms.
Our other therapies also help accomplish these goals and others. Family therapy, for example, is an excellent place to mend relationships. This provides a safe space to address family challenges as, with greater understanding and communication, comes greater peace of mind.
Physical Activity as a Form of Stress Reduction
Exercise classes, such as those offered at an Emerald Isle rehab center, have been found to promote overall mental and physical health and wellness. Physical activity is linked to a reduction in anxiety, depression, and negative moods.
Training in breathing techniques, coping mechanisms, and stress management provides balance. This is why we prefer a well-rounded and holistic approach to mental health care.
Therapy and medication are excellent resources, but treatment is much more effective when it involves more than that. For severe cases of bipolar disorder, we recommend inpatient treatment. We also recommend this level of care for those who live farther away.
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Medications Used in Bipolar Disorder Treatment
Depending on the severity of your disorder, treatment may include the administration of medications such as atypical antipsychotics and other mood stabilizers. Choosing a medication for bipolar disorder will depend on the symptoms you experience.
Some of the most commonly used are mood stabilizers, such as Lithium. This medicine helps ease mood swings for most patients. For others, it may reduce their intensity. Other medications used for bipolar disorder patients include sleep aids and anti-anxiety medicines.
Emerald Isle Bipolar Disorder Treatment
At Emerald Isle, we offer health and recovery services that do not adhere to a one-size-fits-all approach. We mold our programs to our individual patients’ needs, providing endless support and privacy throughout their recovery journey.
In both Sun City and Surprise, Arizona, our facilities and treatment services are a notch above the rest. We offer innovative, proven, customized, and holistic recovery services. You will find everything you need right here.
Call now at 855-615-0644, and we will help you take the first step to achieving a happier, healthier, and mentally-secure you, today!