Bipolar disorder can be described as a mental ailment where the characteristic signs are extreme mood swings. The high periods are known as mania and the low periods are referred to as depression. At times the mood swings can get all mixed up and the person could feel depressed and elated at the same time. It is not as if this is a rare disease. In fact, back in 2005, a study discovered that 2.6 percent of the population in the United States of America (USA) had some form of bipolar disorder. This was equivalent to 5 million people at the very least.
The symptoms of bipolar disorder are normally seen during the early adult or late teen years of a person. However, these can be evident in children as well. Women are more at risk in these cases compared to men but the reasons for that are not really clear.
As such, bipolar disorder has a wide variety of signs and symptoms. At times, these symptoms are ones that can be found in other conditions as well and this can make it extremely hard to diagnose such a condition. The warning signs in these cases can be divided into two major groups – depression and mania.
Generally the manic type of bipolar disorder has a number of symptoms. However, 7 among these happen to be the most important ones in these cases. Normally in these cases, a person feels unusually happy and is on a high of sorts and that too for an extended period of time. The need for sleep among such people also decreases with time. More often than not they talk really fast and their thoughts are always racing. They are always impulsive or feeling really restless. They can be easily distracted as well and are generally overconfident in their abilities.
They also tend to engage in risk-laden behavior such as having sex on a whim, spending a lot of money at once, and gambling with the money that they have saved throughout their lives.
The signs of depression are just like those of mania in the sense that there are plenty of them. However, there are some that can be regarded as evident signs. In these cases, the individuals feel hopeless and sad for a really long period of time and they tend to withdraw from their near and dear ones like friends and family. They also lose interest in the activities that they tend to enjoy normally.
Their appetite also changes rather significantly. They also feel a substantial lack of energy and are fatigued most often. They experience issues with things such as memory, decision making, and concentration. Apart from that, they tend to think about ending their lives on their own. At the very least, they tend to be preoccupied with death.
If you know someone with such issues it is always better to try and make an effort to get that person to seek medical care.