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Learn more about bipolar disorder here with us
Bipolar disorder is a chronic illness characterized by an imbalance in mood. This is common in the population, approximately 3 to 5% of the population will appear to have some type of bipolar disorder.
Generally this is triggered in adolescence or early adulthood, being more common for men to present symptoms earlier than women. We invite you to learn more about bipolar disorder, its symptoms and causes below.
What are the signs and symptoms?
Research has not found any determining cause-effect evidence for bipolar disorder, which is why it is believed to be derived from a combination of three factors.
Evidence has been found that most people with bipolar disorder, specifically between 80% and 90% have a family member who has suffered from some type of depression, so it is deduced that this factor could predispose the appearance of the disorder and in combination with some other factors triggers the onset.
2. Biochemical imbalance
This stems from an abnormal production of hormones and an imbalance in the normal production of neurotransmitters in the brain.
3. Psychological factors
Evidence has been found that suffers from pointing to a higher incidence of this disorder in people surrounded by high stress during their daily lives or having gone through some traumatic event that can trigger the appearance of the disorder.
4. Other possible factors
Like organic diseases, the consumption of psychotropic substances or alcohol and changes in the rhythm of sleep-wakefulness have been associated with the appearance of bipolar disorder.
Now that we know the possible causes, we must know that this disorder alternates between cycles of mania or hypomania and depression, sometimes severe and if the episodes are very intense they can trigger psychosis.
The duration of the cycles depends on the type of bipolar disorder and the particularities of each case, sometimes one of the poles usually lasts longer than the other or is more intense.
Some fast-cycling people can experience up to four cycles a year and in contrast some people with slow cycles can experience a few in their entire lifetime.
Traits that characterize the mania or hypomania phase:
They are high moods
Lack common sense
Sleeping very little or no sleep
Absence from work, school, or social events
Socially outgoing and can become aggressive
Racing thoughts and speaking
Features that characterize the depressive phase:
Physical pain without cause
Feelings of guilt
Weight loss or gain
Fatigue and lack of energy
Inability to cope with social situations
Not being able to enjoy activities that were previously rewarding
Keys to psychotherapy for this diagnosis
For bipolar disorder there are several treatments that are seen to be carried out together, in terms of psychotherapy after diagnosis helps people to identify signs to be able to control the disorder.
Cognitive behavioral therapy is generally used to help recognize and take action to manage triggers such as stress.
It encourages working on those factors that help regulate and maintain a stable state of mind as far as possible.
Work with the support of family members, partners, and friends.
This can favor the maintenance of functional and healthy relationships in people's lives. If necessary, you can also work from family therapy.
Types of bipolar disorder
Bipolar I disorder
In order to diagnose this, you must have experienced at least one phase of mania.
A previously severe depressive episode.
Other disorders that could cause these symptoms such as delusional disorder or schizophrenia should be ruled out.
Bipolar II disorder
In this the phase of depression is dominant with respect to hypomania.
At the very least, he must have had one episode of depression and at least one episode of hypomania.
Furthermore, the symptoms cannot be explained by any other diagnosis.
People with hypomania may feel and function well, however their mood will be unstable and there is a high probability that depressive symptoms will appear later.
It is classified in a different section than bipolarity, but it involves symptoms of hypomania and depression, however the changes in this are less intense.
This in the same way can affect many aspects of life, so it also requires medication.
Bipolar disorder will accompany people who suffer from it throughout their lives, however, with adequate pharmacological treatment, therapy and a solid support system, this disorder can practically not affect the normal development of these people.