Bipolar disorder

Bipolar disorder is shown by extreme mood swings. Extreme mood swings are when you go from feeling very sad to feeling very happy to the point of being manic. This makes it difficult to have a normal life.

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People who have bipolar disorder have a lot of mood changes. For example, they feel very sad for 2 months and it is difficult for them to work. Then they feel very happy and start to do many things because they have a lot of energy.

If this happens to you, you may have bipolar disorder and you can talk to your doctor about ways to help. In some people, these mood swings are very severe and last a long time. They can cause great suffering.

Symptoms of bipolar disorder

If you have bipolar disorder, you can feel very depressed. Depressed is when you feel so sad you cannot do normal things. Some things you can feel or experience when you are depressed are:

  • crying a lot
  • no energy
  • feeling very tired
  • sleeping too much or not being able to sleep
  • eating too much or not wanting to eat
  • finding it hard to pay attention
  • thinking about killing yourself
  • not enjoying activities you used to like
  • feeling guilty or bad even though you did not do anything wrong
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If you have bipolar disorder, you experience manic episodes. Manic episodes are when you feel very happy and have a lot of energy. Some things you can feel or experience when you have a manic episode are:

  • you have a lot of energy
  • you feel very happy
  • you sleep less than normal
  • you talk too much and too fast
  • you spend a lot of money on things you do not need
  • you go out a lot to parties and events
  • you have inflated self-esteem. Inflated self-esteem is when you think you are better and more important than normal. For example, you believe you are superhuman so you cannot get hurt. Or, you believe you are very talented and famous.
  • you have grandiose delusions. Grandiose means very big. Delusions are when you believe something is real when it is not. Grandiose delusions can be when you believe you are so strong and important that you cannot get hurt. If you believe you cannot get hurt, you might do dangerous things you would not do normally.

You would have both a depressive episode and a manic episode for a doctor to decide that you have bipolar disorder. Many people who have bipolar disorder have a close relative who also has bipolar disorder.