Depression Symptoms In Bipolar Patients – Ways To Help Them
Many illnesses have been known to cause confusion among people, especially in recorded history, such as depression. For years to come, depression is portrayed in arts and literature.
What do we understand about depressive disorder today?
Depressive disorders have been around for centuries, and many people have suffered without getting diagnosed and the necessary treatment. Today, there is more awareness about the disorder, although millions of people are still unaware they have it.
For some people, it is embarrassing to reveal that they suffer from this illness and they don’t want to accept it themselves. There is a various classification of depressive disorder. The more common classifications are Bipolar Disorder, Major Depression, and Dysthymia.
Are you having shifts on mood?
It is important to understand that Bipolar Disorder is not a rare illness that some random people suffer. It is very common that you, a family member, a friend, your spouse, son, daughter can suffer from this disorder and you haven’t realized just yet. Then that is why is so important to understand and learn about this Disorder.
Let’s check some figures…” According to research and statistics, in a given year, bipolar disorder affects about 5.7 million American adults, or about 2.6% of the U.S. population 18 and older, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.
It is nothing to be ashamed of. Personally, I have not been diagnosed by a psychiatrist in the past of having the disorder. Also, note that I am not a psychiatrist either. Nevertheless, I have studied extensively about the disorder and even taken online tests in order to understand myself better, and I have come to realize that I have constantly shifted in mood, energy, activity levels, and the ability to carry out daily tasks (lack of focus and concentration) and all those are signals of Bipolar Disorder.
Let’s talk about the classifications and symptoms
In the Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder, a patient has depression, as well as manic cycles. In Major Depression, the symptoms include feeling sad, not being able to eat and sleep properly, inability to cope with work and finding life less enjoyable, feeling of worthlessness, etc. Their lives are upset greatly.
Dysthymia is not as severe as major depression, although there are long term symptoms and a person can experience major depressive episodes. Whilst there is no cure, there are good treatments and medications to help patients stabilize and control any episodes with a better outcome of their quality of life.
Many symptoms are present in depressive disorders. Anyone with bipolar can experience all these symptoms during a cycle of Depression, while during a cycle of manic, only manic are felt.
The list of the depressive Symptoms
- Ongoing anxiety, Sadness and ‘Feeling Empty’
- Losing Interest and pleasure in activities or hobbies that were once very enjoyable
- Sleep Disorder which may be Insomnia or a tendency to oversleep
- Eating more and gaining weight
- Loss of appetite, with weight reduction
- Thoughts of suicide and death
- Lack of Energy and Fatigue
- Feeling restless and irritable
- Unable to make decisions, loss of concentration and memory
- The physical symptoms: digestive disorders, muscular aches, and pain, more headaches.
Let’s Concentrate on Mood and Behavior Changes
I want to be more specific about mood and behavior changes. This is because of the main issues of depressive disorder rallies around changes in mood and behavior.
Basically, in a day, you can be completely happy, enjoying your life and then in an instant, you change completely and have the opposite mood and behavior. Let me go into a more technical language.
People with bipolar disorder experience unusually intense emotional states that occur in distinct periods called “mood episodes.” Each mood episode represents a drastic change from a person’s usual mood and behavior.
Understanding Better your Behavior
An overly joyful or overexcited state is called a manic episode, and an extremely sad or hopeless state is called a depressive episode. Sometimes, a mood episode includes symptoms of both mania and depression.
During a mixed state, you might feel very agitated, have trouble sleeping, experience major changes in appetite, and have suicidal thoughts. People in a mixed state may feel very sad or hopeless while at the same time feel extremely energized.
For example, if you are having psychotic symptoms during a manic episode, you may believe you are a famous person, have a lot of money, or have special powers. This is called grandiose delusion. On the other hand, if you are having psychotic symptoms during a depressive episode, you may believe you are ruined and penniless, or you have committed a crime.
Honestly, that kind of change (state) makes me believe that I suffer from a Bipolar Disorder. Before now, it was difficult for me to admit it, but now that I know more, researched more and kept a diary of myself, I can see more reflection of me having those behaviors. Keeping a daily life chart that makes note of your daily mood symptoms, treatments, sleep patterns, and life events can help you, understand better what are you going through.
What are those changes? Do you know them?
As I mentioned before in this blog, I have tried different online tests and have found them to be very useful. I actually have one in my blog (www.BeatingmyAnxiety.com) which you can use, but if not, check those different moods and behavioral changes and see if you can identify yourself or whoever you are trying to provide support. We are including two types: manic and depression.
Symptoms of mania or a manic episode include:
- An overly long period of feeling “high,” or an overly happy or outgoing mood
- Extreme irritability.
- Talking very fast, jumping from one idea to another, having racing thoughts
- Being unusually distracted
- Increasing activities, such as taking on multiple new projects
- Being overly restless
- Sleeping little or not being tired
- Having an unrealistic belief in your abilities
- Behaving impulsively and engaging in pleasurable, high-risk behaviors.
Symptoms of depression or a depressive episode include:
- An overly long period of feeling sad or hopeless
- Loss of interest in activities once enjoyed, including sex.
- Feeling overly tired or “slowed down”
- Having problems concentrating, remembering, and making decisions
- Being restless or irritable
- Changing eating, sleeping, or other habits
- Thinking of death or suicide, or attempting suicide
Not all the symptoms are experienced by Bipolar patients. There may only be a few from the list, whilst there are those who get many of the symptoms. Symptoms vary from each person according to degree оf severity.
Seeking Professional Help
It’s extremely important to clarify that my blog never pretends to substitute or eliminate the professional help. My vision is to bring content and tools to support the people that suffer from this disorder and any other. If an individual needs to have a proper psychological and physical evaluation, the arrangements have to be made for the suitable treatment.
When you visit the psychiatrist, he will ask you some questions as a form of history taking, then examine you physically, as well as conduct some specific laboratory tests in order to rule out other medical conditions. Sometimes, depressive symptoms can be brought on by other illness or side effects of medication that are taken for other conditions. This is important for any person so that the correct type of depressive illness is determinate.
The evaluation is diagnostic and involves looking at the patient’s medical history, the symptoms they experience, and for how long. Questions will be asked to find out the severity of what they feel, and if they have experienced certain symptoms. The doctor will also need to know if you have been treated before with the same symptoms and the medications you were prescribed. A Bipolar Patient will also be asked whether they use alcohol or drugs, which can influence how they feel, or any thoughts they have of death or suicide. Looking at the Family’s history is important to determinate any causes.
How severe can a Bipolar Disorder be?
A person’s mental status can be affected by the Bipolar Depression symptoms. Their memory, speech and also their thought pattern can also be assessed in an evaluation to see how they have been affected.
It also helps to speak to the patient’s spouse, partner or close friend who knows them to see how they have changed. X-rays and blood tests are not required in mental disorders. Detailed scans such as CT, MRI, PET, and SPECT are unable to detect brain changes of patients with Bipolar or in fact, any other mental illness. In addition, people with bipolar disorder are at higher risk for thyroid disease, migraine headaches, heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and other physical illnesses.
When it becomes necessary for medication?
A Doctor who specializes in this field is able to evaluate the state of a Bipolar patient’s mind properly. The correct treatment along with medication can then be prescribed to help the patient as soon as possible to control the episodes, and lead a normal life.
For the individual, their symptoms may be normal for them, but treatment is necessary for their well being. It can be alarming for other when they see a person at the height of their depressive illness, for example, if they do things to the extreme. They may be seen as an insane. Bipolar disorder cannot be cured, but it can be treated effectively over the long-term.
Treatment for Bipolar Disorder in children is similar to treatment in Adults. I never want to take any medication and I’ve been using an alternative treatment, but again based on your conditions you need to see medical advice. Best Medical treatment for Bipolar Disorder is individualized, which further explains why you need to see a specialist. I offer in my blog great alternative product that been helping my family and me.
However, there are Natural Remedies which can help improve your quality of life, such as, Exercise, eating healthy (taking Supplement), setting goals to accomplish, having fun, surrounding yourself with positive people. In general, adopt a positive attitude towards life.
My Final Advice, learn and apply your Knowledge
You should always see a doctor if you are experiencing any symptoms to determine the cause. Looking at the major symptoms of Bipolar can help, as any symptoms no matter how few can indicate that you could be suffering from Bipolar Disorder.
If you are searching to provide support to a friend or relative, you can do:
- Offer emotional support, understanding, patience, and encouragement
- Learn about bipolar disorder so you can understand what your friend or relative is experiencing, check my Blog www.BeatingmyAnxiety.com
- Talk to your friend or relative and listen carefully
- Listen to feelings your friend or relative expresses and be understanding about situations that may trigger bipolar symptoms
- Invite your friend or relative out for positive distractions, such as walks, outings, and other activities
- Remind your friend or relative that, with time and treatment, he or she can get better.
Check with your doctor before taking any pills.
- Never ignore comments from your friend or relative about harming himself or herself.
I hope this information will be useful, if you want to know more and learn more feel free to go to our BLOG. Please, leave your comment as we are looking to become better every day do more research and provide solutions. I know how it feels to suffer from that disorder and I want to help people overcome some of them and pursue a more fulfilled and meaningful Life. Thank you.