Bipolar Disorder

Shelby Owens & Kenny Adkins

Bipolar disorder is a condition in which a person has periods of depression and periods of being extremely happy or being irritable. Bipolar disorder can be seen as far back in history as the 2nd century. The first diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder dates back to about 300-500 AD when Areteaus of Cappadocia first started noticing some symptoms like mania and depression, and thought that they could be linked together.

The current thinking of what causes bipolar disorder is that this is a predominantly biological disorder that occurs in a specific part of the brain and is due to a malfunction of the neurotransmitters. This disorder tends to run in the family. It might lie and be activated on its own, or it might be triggered by other factors like stress. Patients with bipolar depression were twice as likely to have died from suicide or accidental death than were patients who had other types of depression.

Some symptoms are an inability to handle daily activities, may have a distorted sense of reality, manic episodes, depressive episodes, long-lasting periods of unstable moods. During a mixed state of mania and depression symptoms can include agitation, insomnia, major changes in appetite, and suicidal thinking.

There is no cure for bipolar disorder, so people with the disorder need long-term treatment to maintain control of their symptoms. Medications that are used to control this disorder are mostly mood stabilizing. With the right treatment, the long term health outlook for someone with this disorder is favorable. Episodes will start to decrease over time.

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