Bipolar Disorder Essay

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Bipolar Disorder


Bipolar disorder is often considered a hereditary disease. According to the National

Mental Health Association (2001) a specific genetic link to bipolar disorder has not been found.

Studies show that 80 to 90 percent of those who suffer from bipolar disorder have relatives with

some form of depression (NIMH, 2001). Bipolar disorder is a mental illness involving one or

more episodes of serious mania and depression which causes individuals to feel an euphoric type

high or feeling really low. Over 2.5 million people in America have bipolar disorder. This

disorder usually occurs during adolescence or early adulthood and continues throughout life.

Although, young children can be diagnosed
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In order to diagnose an individual

with a certain bipolar disorder, an individual would have to have signs and symptoms that are

listed in the criteria of mania, depressive, mixed, or hypomaniac episodes. According to the

DSM-IV criteria, “Mania episodes “ are distinctive periods of abnormally and persistently

elevated, expansive, or irritable mood, lasting at least one week (or any duration if hospitalization is necessary) ( Keck & McElroy, 2002 ). During the period of mood disturbance, three or

more of the following symptoms have persisted ( fur if the mood is only irritable) and have been

present to a significant degree: inflated self-esteem, racing thoughts, more talkative,

easily distracted, increase in goal-directed activity, and excessive involvement in activities that

have high potential for painful consequences.” Manic episode can lead to troubled relationships,

poor school/job performance, harm of self and others and problems with an individuals social

life.

The second type of episode is called Major Depressive Episode, which symptoms must

have been present five or more times during a two week period and show a change of usability to

function as previously. Symptoms consist of being depressed nearly everyday, decrease in

interest or activities, dramatic weight loss, insomnia or hypersomnia,…

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