Behavioral Health Conditions

Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder, previously known as manic depression, is an illness involving one or more episodes of serious mania and depression. The illness causes a person to have severe mood swings—from excessively “high” and/or irritable to sad and hopeless, with periods of a normal mood in between. In addition, major depressive disorder is often misdiagnosed in those with bipolar disorder, as patients only tend to seek help when they’re experiencing a period of depression. A thorough understanding of the patient’s mood tendencies is key to an accurate diagnosis—and referral to an appropriate mental health professional.

The Mood Disorder Questionnaire (MDQ) includes 13 questions associated with bipolar disorder symptoms.

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The symptoms of mania can include:

  • Excessive energy, activity, restlessness, rapid talking
  • Denial that anything is wrong
  • Extreme “high” or euphoric feelings
  • Easily irritated or distracted
  • Decreased need for sleep
  • Unrealistic beliefs in one’s ability and powers

Symptoms of depression can include:

  • Persistent sad, anxious mood
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Change in appetite and weight
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in activities
  • Irritability or restlessness
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering
  • Fatigue or loss of energy
  • Persistent physical symptoms
  • Thoughts of death or suicide
  • Feeling guilty, hopeless or worthless