Bipolar disorder is often difficult to recognize and diagnose. It causes a person to have a high level of energy, unrealistically expansive thoughts or ideas and impulsive or reckless behavior. These symptoms may feel good to a person, which may lead to denial that there is a problem.
Another reason bipolar disorder is difficult to diagnose is that its symptoms may appear to be part of another illness or attributed to other problems such as substance abuse, poor school performance or trouble in the workplace. Symptoms of Mania
- Excessive energy, activity, relentlessness, racing thoughts and rapid talking
- Denial that anything is wrong
- Extreme “high” or euphoric feelings – a person may feel “on top of the world” and nothing, including bad news or tragic events, can change this “happiness”
- Easily irritated or distracted
- Decreased need for sleep – an individual may last for days with little or no sleep without feeling tired
- Unrealistic beliefs in one’s ability and powers – a person may experience feelings of exaggerated confidence or unwarranted optimism. This can lead to over ambitious work plans and the belief that nothing can stop him or her from accomplishing any task.
- Uncharacteristically poor judgment - a person may make poor decisions which may lead to unrealistic involvement in activities, meetings and deadlines, reckless driving, spending sprees and foolish business ventures
- Sustained period of behavior that is different from usual – a person may dress and/or act differently than he or she usually does, become a collector of various items, become indifferent to personal grooming, become obsessed with writing or experience delusions
- Abuse of drugs, particularly cocaine, alcohol or sleeping medications
- Provocative, intrusive or aggressive behavior – a person may become enraged or paranoid if his or her grand ideas are stopped or excessive social plans are refused
Some people experience periods of normal mood and behavior following a manic phase, however, the depressive phase will eventually appear.
Symptoms of Depression
- Persistent sad, anxious or empty mood
- Sleeping too much or too little, middle-of-the-night or early morning waking
- Reduced appetite and weight loss or increased appetite and weight gain
- Loss of interest or pleasure in activities, including sex
- Irritability or restlessness
- Difficulty concentrating, remembering or making decisions
- Fatigue or loss of energy
- Persistent physical symptoms that don’t respond to treatment (such as chronic pain or digestive disorders)
- Thoughts of death or suicide, including suicide attempts
- Feeling guilty, hopeless or worthless
Learn More About Bipolar Disorder Services at Laureate Psychiatric Clinic and Hospital
Please call the Outpatient Clinic with questions, Monday - Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 918-491-3700. Laureate Hospital is available 24 hours/7 days for all emergencies at 918-481-4000.