Bipolar Disorder is marked by unusual and extreme shifts in mood that interfere with daily functioning, such as employment, school, relationships, and self-esteem. It includes episodes of clinical depression and mania (or a milder form of mania known as hypomania). While people can experience depressive episodes on their own, manic episodes can only occur within the context of Bipolar Disorder.
Mania is experienced as an elevated or euphoric mood state that lasts at least one week (or less in specific circumstances) and is accompanied by inflated self-esteem or grandiosity, decreased need for sleep, talking more than usual and at a faster rate, racing thoughts, distractibility, increased activity or difficulty sitting still, and/or excessive involvement in risky behaviors, such as substance use, sexual promiscuity, overspending, and gambling. Individuals may also experience symptoms of psychosis in which they lose touch with reality and experience hallucinations and delusions.
To read more, check out my recent blog on Bipolar Disorder (insert hyperlink to Bayview article).
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