Bipolar Disorder Essay

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Bipolar Disorder is a serious and complicated mood disorder characterized by abnormal fluctuations between an individual’s high and low moods. Mania, Depression, Hypomania and Mixed Episodes are the predominant moods that can be identified in the different forms of Bipolar Disorder (GlaxoSmithKlein, 2007). The etiology, symptomology, and treatment for each mood and form of Bipolar Disorder vary as well. Moods can be identified by a person’s level of happiness, sadness, outlook on life and how he may physically feel (Mondimore, 2006). Patients struggling with Bipolar Disorder have difficulty regulating the euphoric highs of mania, the “black hole” feelings of depression, the “softer side” of hypomania and the incessant cycling of Mixed …show more content…
The intensity of these “high” feelings can be so euphoric that these individuals enjoy their manic episode. Inevitably, however, extreme highs lead to irritability and anger because the Mania is too much for the individual to handle (Mondimore, 2006). To be diagnosed as a Manic episode, the person must solely display an elevated or irritable mood for at least one week in addition to at least three of the symptoms listed above. These symptoms must negatively affect his or her ability to properly function in society. Mixed Episode must be ruled out as well (APA, 2000).
Depression, the other extreme mood of Bipolar Disorder, is characterized with feelings of guilt, shame, regret, sadness, loss, hopelessness and suffocation. Individuals in a depressive episode often times blame themselves for their sorrow. To be diagnosed with Major Depression, they must suffer from a depressed mood or a loss of interest in previously pleasurable activities, in addition to at least five other symptoms which may include insomnia or hypersomnia, inability to maintain a healthy weight, fatigue, slow thinking, and suicidal ideations. These symptoms must last for at least two weeks. Mixed Episode must be ruled out as well (APA, 2000). Even the most natural beauties, such as a sunset or a flower, are interpreted as bland…

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