INTRODUCTION TO BIPOLAR DISORDER
You may be suffering from Bipolar Disorder, which is also known as manic-depressive condition, if you are experiencing extreme shifts in your mood, energy and activity levels. These changes are different from the normal ups and downs that everyone goes through from time to time.
For more information on mental health conditions, you may refer to the Community Mental Health Resource Directory.
WHAT ARE THE SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
- Inability to experience leisure activities
- Decrease in concentration and thinking
- Reduced interest in activities that were once pleasurable
- Feeling hopeless, sad or empty
- Loss of energy
- Loss of appetite/weight changes
- Change in sleeping patterns
- Recurrent thoughts of suicide/death
- Feeling unusually high
- Extreme irritability
- Higher energy level
- Increased libido
- Grandiose delusions
- Racing thoughts
- Unusual talkativeness
- Sleeping very little but energetic
- Impaired judgement
WHAT ARE THE CAUSES
- Biological: Research indicates that you are prone to bipolar disorder if someone in your family has the disorder. Chemical imbalances in the brain can also cause bipolar disorder.
- Environment and Stress: Environmental factors such as undergoing a major life event or crisis and experiencing high levels of stress may precipitate a higher chance of you developing bipolar disorder.
- Substance abuse: Substance abuse may also cause bipolar disorder.
HOW IT IS TREATED
If you think you or someone you know may have bipolar disorder, you should seek advice from a mental health professional.
Treatment comes in two main forms:
- Psychological treatments: Involves using therapeutic techniques which can help manage the anxiety.
- Medication: There is evidence to suggest that people with an anxiety disorder may have chemical imbalances in their brain. Medications can restore balance.
Source: Singapore Silver Pages, an initiative by the Agency for Integrated Care. Reproduced with permission.
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