Bipolar disorder is actually a very common ailment, that impacts a lot of people. According to NHS.uk 1 in every 100 people will be diagnosed with it at some point in their life. Bipolar disorder can occur at any age, although it most commonly develops between the ages of 15 and 19 and rarely after the age of 40.
Bipolar Disorders are characterized by drastic changes in mood, activity, and energy levels that affect the person’s capacity to accomplish normal daily tasks.
There are essentially four types of bipolar disorder – and all of them involve distinct switches in mood, energy, and activity levels.
These moods can differ from periods of tremendously “up,” ecstatic, and energized behavior (known as manic episodes) to very sad, “down,” or desperate periods (known as depressive episodes).
People who are experiencing a manic episode may:
- Feel very “up,” “high,” or elated
- Have a lot more energy than usual
- Have amplified activity levels
- Feel “jittery” or “wired”
- Have difficulty sleeping
- Become more active than usual
- Talk very fast about an array of different topics
- Act agitated, irritable, or “touchy”
- Feel like their thoughts are going very fast
- Think they can do many things all at once
- Do risky things, such as spend a lot of money.
People having a depressive episode may:
- Experience very sad, down, empty, or generally depressed emotions
- Experience very little energy
- Experience lower activity levels
- Experience trouble sleeping, they may sleep too little or too much
- Feel like they can’t enjoy anything
- Feel stressed and empty
- Find that they have difficulty concentrating
- Forget things often
- Eat too much or too little
- Feel tired or “slowed down”
- Think about death or suicide.
Adults aged 18-29 are the most likely to have bipolar disorder. Men and women have a very similar chance of being affected.
Of adults affected by Bipolar Disorder, a shocking 82.9% have a serious impairment caused by the disorder – with only 17.1% experiencing a moderate case of the disorder.
Bipolar Disorders make up the highest percentage of serious mental health illness out of all types of mood disorders.
If you believe that you or someone you care about might be living with bipolar disorder, seek the help and advice of a professional psychiatrist with a specialty in this area.