font size

Bipolar Disorder (cont.)

Medical Author:
Medical Editor:

What are the types of bipolar disorder?

Bipolar disorder has a number of types, including bipolar type I and bipolar type II disorder. Depending on how rapidly the mood swings occur, the episodes of bipolar disorder can also be classified as mixed (mood disordered episodes that last less than the usual amount of time required for the diagnosis) or rapid cycling (four or more mood disordered episodes per year). About two-fifths of people with bipolar disorder have at least one period of rapid cycling over the course of their lifetime. For every type and duration of the illness, the sufferer experiences significant problems with his or her functioning at school, at work, or socially, may require hospitalization, or may have psychotic symptoms (for example, delusions or hallucinations). The diagnosis of bipolar I disorder requires that the individual has at least one manic episode but does not require a history of major depression. Bipolar II disorder is diagnosed if the person has experienced at least one episode of major depression and at least one episode of hypomania (a milder form of mania).

A mixed episode is defined as a period of time in which both the criteria to diagnose a major depressive episode and a manic episode are fully met, except for the duration requirements of each. The mood problem (manic alternating with depressive symptoms) takes place nearly every day for a total of at least a week.

What are bipolar disorder causes and risk factors?

One frequently asked question about bipolar disorder is if it is hereditary. As with most other mental disorders, bipolar disorder is not directly passed from one generation to another genetically. Rather, it is the result of a complex group of genetic, psychological, and environmental factors. Genetically, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia have much in common, in that the two disorders share a number of the same risk genes. However, both illnesses also have some genetic factors that are unique.

Stress has been found to be a significant contributor to the development of most mental illnesses, including bipolar disorder. For example, gay, lesbian, and bisexual people are thought to experience increased emotional struggles associated with the multiple social stressors that are linked to coping with reactions to their homosexuality or bisexuality in society.


Patient Comments

Viewers share their comments

Bipolar Disorder (Mania) - Effective Treatments Question: What kinds of treatments have been effective for your bipolar disorder (mania)?
Bipolar Disorder - Symptoms Question: What symptoms do you experience with your bipolar disorder?
Bipolar Disorder - Causes and Risks Question: Were you at risk for developing bipolar disorder? Please share your story.
Bipolar Disorder - Diagnosis Question: What tests and assessments led to a diagnosis of bipolar disorder in you or a relative?
Bipolar Disorder - Support Question: What forms of support have helped you or a relative who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder?
Bipolar Disorder - Types Question: Describe your type of bipolar disorder, along with your symptoms and treatment.
Source: MedicineNet.com
http://www.medicinenet.com/bipolar_disorder/article.htm

Emotional Wellness

Get tips on therapy and treatment.

advertisement
advertisement
Use Pill Finder Find it Now See Interactions

Pill Identifier on RxList

  • quick, easy,
    pill identification

Find a Local Pharmacy

  • including 24 hour, pharmacies

Interaction Checker

  • Check potential drug interactions
Search the Medical Dictionary for Health Definitions & Medical Abbreviations

NIH talks about Ebola on WebMD