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Manic depression, also known as bipolar disorder in recent days, is a major mood disorder characterized by hypomanic or manic episodes (deviation from one's usual mood along with abnormally high energy levels). Mania involves sleeplessness, along with psychosis, hallucinations, rage, grandiose delusions or paranoia. Mania or hypomania isn’t usually harmful to the patient and they might exhibit increased capacity for work and creativity. Depressive episodes however, can be debilitating and often life threatening as the person becomes self-destructive and suicidal in many instances.
The extent of mood swings can vary from extreme to very mild. They can occur progressively or suddenly and might last for few days to weeks. Patients affected by bipolar disorder may experience disturbances in thinking apart from depressive or manic episodes. Distortions of perception and impaired social functioning are also not uncommon. The cause of bipolar disorder is not fully understood like most mental health conditions and is often thought to be hereditary.
The extent of the seriousness of the bipolar symptoms varies from person to person. In some people, the disorder is not full blown and they don’t exhibit all the symptoms. Others who aren’t that lucky might have to be hospitalized multiple times in their lives as the symptoms creep into their work and personal life and make living a normal life a tough challenge.
Psychotic symptoms such as disorganized thinking, hallucinations and delusions might make a person do things that demand the urgency of hospitalization to keep them safe from their suicidal impulses. These symptoms might need to be urgently addressed by a psychiatrist and with the help of medications, the person might be able to regain control of their lives.
The symptoms of bipolar disorder are many and can be mainly categorized into two (sometimes overlapping) categories of mania or hypomania and depression:
Manic symptoms include:
- Grandiose delusions (delusion of grandeur)
- Racing thoughts which are often disconnected
- Sense of euphoria or false elation
- Irritability without cause
- Hampered social functioning
- Increased sexual inclination and risky sexual behavior
- Increase in talking volume or speed
- Impaired judgment
- Reduced sleep requirements owing to extra energy levels
- Increased productivity and creativity
Depressive symptoms include:
- Abnormal eating patterns like over or under-eating to the extent of severe medical complications accompanied by drastic changes in weight
- Difficulty in concentration, making decisions and remembering
- Lack of energy or fatigue
- Contemplating about death for prolonged periods of time and suicidal behavior
- Oversleeping, insomnia or early awakening
- Persistent pessimism
- Irritability and restlessness
- Feeling of hopeless and negative attitude
Mood stabilizers, such as lithium are commonly employed to treat bipolar disorder. Anticonvulsants, benzodiazepines and anti psychotics can also be used in the treatment. Along with medications, support from family and friends is of the utmost importance as they need to help provide all the support required in making the person functional and healthy.
I've noticed a developing tremor in my left arm over the last month that I've never had before, and it can get distracting enough to prevent daily tasks such as making coffee without spilks, and I've had a verbal stammering and stuttering problem. It's not severe, but I've become easily annoyed by small, simple tasks in my life and I'm uncertain what caused the onset. Is this an immediate concern, or one I can consult my family doctor about?
Doctor my father is sometimes happy and suddenly shouting and getting angry and again crying then again he is normal like this he is doing for the past 1 month what problem?
I'm suffering from depression (anxiety disorder). Symptoms - oversleep, appetite issues. Kindly suggest ways to get rid of this illness.
Sir. I think I have disease called bipolar concern with mind problems. I am constantly in tension and can not do anything with fresh mind. I constantly keep thinking on silly think and can not stop thanking. I can never concentrate.
Depression is a very unfortunate state to be in, in every sense of the word. It is a sickness of the mind and can only be felt by the person experiencing it. As a matter of fact, it is even worse when depression does not occur on its own, but is rather accompanied by another condition such as fatigue.
There are many cases where depression occurs along with chronic fatigue syndrome. The irony is that when a person is depressed, he or she is unlikely to be willing to get out of bed and when this is compounded by chronic fatigue syndrome, even if the depression alleviates, it would not make much of a difference as it would be a case of ‘mind willing, flesh weak’!
Many of the people who are diagnosed with depression have extreme patterns when it comes to sleep. Either he or she would sleep for extended periods of time and feel lethargic to do anything else. Or, the other situation is generally when he or she is more or less an insomniac and does not get sleep even if he or she would really like to grab a bit of shut-eye!
What are the Symptoms?
When a person is going through depression, it can be said to be of the highest importance to be able to judge the symptoms of the condition soon, so that the person can go and seek treatment. The symptoms, which are being talked about include extreme eating habits, that is, either eating way too much or not enough at all, along with a continuous sense of anxiety which, depending on how severe the case of depression is, can cause a person to have his or her mind clouded by the anxiety which over sweeps all other thoughts. In addition to these symptoms, there are other signs which appear with the onset and continuance of depression. These include disinterest in hobbies, which once appeared enjoyable to take part in.
Chronic fatigue syndrome kills off any urge to partake in any activity, which is voluntary in nature. With the combination of these two conditions, it can be quite possible, rather unfortunately, for a person to find himself or herself to be stuck in a vicious cycle. Sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea can really kill a person’s zing and as a result of the same, make it harder for him or her to get out of depression and more likely to fall into depression if he or she has not yet. Curing depression includes changes schedules, engaging in yoga and other similar activities. Dietary changes may also be warranted. However, the recovery should take effect soon! If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a doctor and ask a free question.