Bipolar Disorder Symptoms

Bipolar disorder is a psychological condition defined by the presence of one or more episodes of abnormally elevated mood either extreme of happiness (mania) or extreme of disgust (depression). These emotional extremes (bipolar disorder symptoms) are usually beyond normal responses to events and often last for extended periods of time.

Bipolar disorder is known by many names: manic depression, manic-depressive disorder, manic-depressive illness, bipolar mood disorder, and bipolar affective disorder. Based on the nature and severity of mood episodes experienced this disorder is subdivided into bipolar I, bipolar II, cyclothymia and the range is often described as the bipolar spectrum.

The primary symptom of bipolar disorder is dramatic and unpredictable mood swings. This swing will be from mania to depression or from depression to mania. Here are the manifestations of the disease when the person is in mania and depression.

When the person is in mania he may

  • Feel extremely happy or laugh unnecessary
  • Have racing thoughts that disturb his routine work
  • Have a very high opinion of himself or herself that is inflated self-esteem
  • Have tendency to make grand and unattainable plans and ends up into foolish business ventures
  • Suffer insomnia or the person doesnai??i??t need for sleeping and feel rested after 3 hours of sleep
  • Talk unnecessary without any meaning and intent
  • Be more active than usual
  • Be easily get distracted by sights and sounds
  • Act impulsively or do reckless things
  • Have high sex drive and urges for frequent, indiscriminate, or unsafe sex

When the person in depression he may

  • Feel extremely sad or anxious for a significant length of time
  • Feel anxiety, irritability and loss of energy
  • Feel hopeless or pessimistic followed by uncontrollable crying
  • Does not like to speak due to slow thoughts and less energy
  • Have change in appetite causing weight loss or gain
  • Have difficulty concentrating, remembering, and making decisions
  • Have decreased interest in usual activities, including sex
  • Have frequent suicidal thoughts
  • Not enjoy things he or she normally would enjoy

Bipolar Disorder Symptoms in Children:

Symptoms of bipolar disorder in children may be confused with those of other disorders, such as depression and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The children have almost the same bipolar disorder symptoms as adults but they are more prone to temper tantrums than manic adults. Some of the symptoms are:

  • The children may complain of headaches, muscle aches, or stomach aches or being tired
  • They often miss school or talk about running away from home
  • They become socially isolated and sensitive to any kind of rejection or criticism
  • A child or teen with bipolar disorder may abuse alcohol or drugs and have difficulty with relationships

Symptoms of bipolar disorder mentioned in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV), were based on adults symptoms. Very little knowledge was available on how this disorder affected the children, when the last edition of DSM was published. But later an extensive research on this topic was carried out researchers Demitri Papolos and Janice Papolos on this topic. Based on their research and observation, symptoms of this disorder in children can be classified in an extensive manner now.

Very Common Bipolar Disorder Symptoms in Children:

  • Low self esteem
  • Fatigue
  • Separation anxiety
  • Social anxiety
  • Depression
  • Rages & explosive temper tantrums existing for several hours together
  • Marked irritability
  • Grandiosity
  • Oppositional behaviour
  • Hyperactivity
  • Aggressive behaviour
  • Frequent mood swings
  • Impulsivity
  • Destructibility
  • Restlessness/ fidgetiness
  • Silliness, goofiness, giddiness
  • Racing thoughts
  • Over-sensitivity to emotional triggers
  • Carbohydrate cravings
  • Difficulty getting up in the morning
  • Risk-taking behaviours

Common Bipolar Disorder Symptoms in Children:

  • Lying
  • Paranoia
  • Bed-wetting in boys
  • Compulsive behaviour
  • Obsessional behaviour
  • Night terrors
  • Pressured speech
  • Lack of organization
  • Hyper sexuality
  • Bossiness
  • Manipulative behaviour
  • Excessive daydreaming
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Hallucinations
  • Poor short term memory
  • Disability in learning
  • Motor & vocal tics
  • Property destruction
  • Fascination with morbid topics

Less Common Bipolar Disorder Symptoms in Children:

  • Cruelty to animals
  • Migraine headaches
  • Self-mutilating behaviours
  • Binging

Nearly 5.7 million American adults or 2.6 percent of the population in this country above the age 18 are affected with bipolar disorder in a given year. The average age for the signs of this disorder to appear is 25 years.

2 responses to Bipolar Disorder Symptoms

  1. Bipolar disorder is a grave illness causing intense mood alterations ranging from feeling depressed to mania, can even contemplate to suicide. It is caused due to genetic predisposition, high-stress lifestyle, sleep deprivation, stress filled events in life etc. Symptoms are: feeling sad, lonely, helpless, and guilty etc. If anyone are suffering from it, should discuss with close ones, friends, so it will relieve one’s pain, should take help from others to prevent it.

  2. I think i may suffer from bipolarity. I am sixteen years old, and i experience most of these symptoms.
    I sleep about a totall of 3 hours a night, I am hypersensitive to critisism. I have attempted suicide 3 times. I often wake up feeling tired and unrested, but as soon as i’m fully awake i’m happy and giddy. I’m hyperactive and i talk way too much. But then soon i find myself sad. Believing im the ugliest person to ever walk this earth. Give it about 15 minutes and im back to being manic. My sexuality is sometimes boosted tenfold. Yet when im depressed i dont want to do anything except lay on my bed and stare out the window. I also go from being caring and loving to being cruel and sadistic. When im depressed i could watch you burn or choke to death and i wouldn’t feel an ounce of regret. I will never physically harm anyone but i can verbally tear you apart. I can use things about you that i wan’t even aware i knew against you. This makes for a very strained relationship woth my parents. Can someone tell me if this is just hormones and being a teenager or am i bipolar?

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *