What More People Should Know About Bipolar Disorder

While many people have heard the term ‘Bipolar Disorder’ before, not enough actually understand what the condition really is. In our blog post ‘Bipolar Disorder: Debunking the Myths’ we explained how the condition is nothing like “being moody” and is a serious mental illness formerly known as manic depression. There are many lesser-known facts related to the disorder that will be very helpful for anyone who is suffering, or knows someone suffering, from the illness. For one, there are three different types of Bipolar Disorder depending on the severity of the case. This also means that there are different modes of treatment used to manage the condition. Despite these different treatments, tools such as eMoods are valuable for anyone suffering from Bipolar Disorder because it helps take note of a person’s general disposition on both a day-to-day and aggregated level.

Medication such as mood stabilizers and antipsychotics are another common treatment for the condition. However, WebMD advises that some Bipolar medications taken by pregnant women increases the risk of birth defects in children. These medicines are also linked to the reduced effectiveness of birth control pills. Given these risks, psychotherapy is a viable alternative particularly for women suffering from Bipolar Disorder. The condition is often a lifelong journey with many negative impacts, which is why companionship through psychotherapy is essential.

One such negative impact is the relation between Bipolar Disorder and learning. Medical News Today suggests that patients diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder may have difficulties in memory functions because of certain changes in their brain. Memory functions refer to the different way people use their memory, either through words, past events or spatial features. The fast-paced teaching of traditional schooling becomes a challenge for people with Bipolar Disorder.  And with more research being done every year on how to improve education for those with a mental illness, Bipolar Disorder sufferers will be more likely to thrive at school.

More research also needs to be done on diagnosing the condition. The challenge with Bipolar Disorder is that it is difficult to diagnose. According to Self.com the illness is often mistaken for clinical depression because people usually seek help during the depressive stage of their manic depression. While individuals suffering from depression can go on feeling down for long periods of time, people with Bipolar Disorder have shorter episodes of depression. This is because when they aren’t depressed, their energy levels are higher than most people’s.

It’s true that Bipolar Disorder is a lifelong battle. However James Skye from Psycom reminds us that people with Bipolar Disorder don’t have to let the illness define them. Realizing how to manage and work on one’s mental health in order to continue pursuing one’s dreams is the most empowering thing a person suffering from Bipolar Disorder can do. While it’s not as easy as it sounds knowing that it’s been done and that it’s possible to be in control of your condition is what people should strive towards.

Mental Health Feature Story composed by Jennifer Birch for the use of emoodtracker.com