Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder is depression alternating with mania
(elated or irritable moods and increased energy).
For at least two weeks, five
or more of these symptoms:
- Feeling miserable and sad almost everyday
- Losing interest or pleasure in most activities
- Feeling anxious or irritable
- Having trouble concentrating or remembering
- Feeling tired
- Feeling guilty
- Sleeping too much or too little
- Eating too much or too little
- Have medically unexplained aches and pains
- Abusing alcohol or drugs
- Thinking of death or suicide
At least three of these symptoms:
- Increased energy and decreased need for sleep.
- Excessive irritability, euphoria, or aggressive
- Increased talkativeness or pressured speech.
- Disconnected and racing thoughts.
- Impulsive behavior and poor judgment such as
spending sprees, erratic driving, or sexual
- Inflated self-esteem
- Increased goal-directed activities
Signs of Suicide
If someone has been preoccupied with thoughts of death or
suicide, call his or her clinician today. If you think the
person may be harmful to you or others, call 911 or take the
person to your local emergency room. Other warning signs
- Talking about hopelessness and worthlessness
- Suddenly being happier and calmer during a depressive
- Making unusual visits or calling people one cares about
- Making arrangements or getting oneís affairs in order
- Giving things away
If someone is manic
During mania, a person may become paranoid, believe ideas
that arenít based in reality, spend a lot of money, or
engage in unsafe activities. Remember that these behaviors
are part of a manic state and the person is not in a normal
state of mind. Try to prevent the person from carrying out
these actions by talking to them and calling the clinician.
You also need to keep the person and your family safe.
Sometimes people in a manic state must be hospitalized. Make
sure you discuss the behavior and options with your
clinician, if possible before a crisis occurs so you can
take appropriate action.