Bipolar Guide to Symptoms, Causes, Treatments and Coping

Bipolar Guide to Symptoms, Causes, Treatments and Coping
Bipolar Guide to Symptoms, Causes, Treatments and Coping

What exactly is bipolar disorder? This mental health illness involves extreme mood swings. These extremes interfere with the patient’s life. These mood swings do involve depression, anxiety, hallucinations and irritability. In this guide, I will discuss the symptoms, causes, treatment options and provide ways of coping with this bipolar disorder diagnosis.

There are clear and distinct symptoms for in each stage of bipolar. The low stage is called the depressive phase while the upper phase is called manic. I will discuss these stages further.

When a bipolar disorder patient is in the depression state of this mental health disorder, they will feel sadness, worthlessness and may not be able to find any happiness for long periods. Suicidal thoughts may occur to the patient and they may sleep for long periods.

It is also common for a person with bipolar disorder to lose weight during a ‘down cycle’, but a small number of those afflicted with gain weight quickly.

Depression will cause the patient to feel very unworthy of everything, so it is imperative that there is a good support system in place. In the depression phase, it is very important to keep talking. Support systems can be family or friends, forum, bipolar disorder chat rooms or local groups that talk about daily occurrences.

In the manic phase, the patient will experience delusions, hallucinations, and will feel as if he or she can accomplish anything. A decreased need for sleep is present as is the boundless energy to accomplish many things.

The bipolar disorder patient will not feel the need to sleep, and this tends to be one of the more creative periods. That patient acts as if they have no disorder, when in fact this may be the most violate of the stages.


Bipolar disorder is a chemical imbalance in the brain, and there are medications to correct that chemical imbalance. The chemical imbalance brings on the extreme mood changes along with the other symptoms of the disorder. Once the missing chemicals are in place, the moods stabilize and the patient is able to have a ‘normal’ life.

There is a family history of bipolar disorder or other type of mental illness. It is important to note that this does seem to have genetic factors. Alcohol and illegal drugs will make this condition worse, but they are not the cause of it.


A qualified doctor will prescribe medication, suggest therapy and will give the patient with the bipolar disorder information on how to manage the illness.

It is always important to take the medicines as your doctor prescribes them, and you should never quit taking them without taking to your doctor first. To quit taking these will no doubt put you back among the cycles of the disorder within a few days.

Also, please do not partake of illegal drugs or alcohol when on these medications.

My husband would stop all his medication in the manic phase because he felt good. He resumed old behaviors such as partaking of alcohol that quickly brought on the other depression cycle.


Bipolar patients may still experience cycles of depression along with the mania but with the medications, those cycles become less severe. It may also be a wise idea to join any support groups you can that will help you to know you are not alone in your struggles.

Educate your self on this bipolar disorder, read all the books you can. There is a wealth of information available on the internet. You can also find support groups of every type on the internet.

Many people are working in various jobs, so do not allow this diagnosis get you down. Some of the most creative minds in the world have bipolar disorder. On this mental health today web site, you will see people like Jim Carey, Patty Duke, Carrie Fisher, Ben Stiller, and Burgess Meredith all live with this mental health issue. This list contains notable names of actors, artists, business people, politicians, sports heroes, TV personalities, as well as just about every type of work force environment.

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