I think I am Bipolar

Dear counsellor ,

I want to start by saying that recently I think I am bipolar. It goes from me being the happiest ever about one decision for example going to the gym, to me having suicidal thoughts about how one pimple on my face is going to change my life. I have recently woken up extremely euphorically just to transition to anxiety attacks that interfere with my daily life. It Is so unusual. I am so indecisive lately, some days I am so active lately working out 4h a day and some days I can t seem to find a reason to get out of bed.
I am a sporty 18 year old man.
Could you help me out with a diagnosis and maybe a solution?
Thank you in advance
Asked by Mihnea
Answered
12/05/2021

Hello Minhea, 

You are wanting confirmation about being diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I will provide you some information about BPD including diagnosis, symptoms, and treatment however you must speak with a licensed therapist or psychiatrist to get validation of this diagnosis. I will answer your question however it is not a confirmation of your diagnosis. 

Some people are more prone to these cyclical changes in mood, also known as cyclothymia. They experience a more or less regular alternation of periods of happiness and sadness, without this phenomenon preventing them from living normally. 

As long as it remains bearable, cyclothymia is not a real disease.
Bipolar disorders, formerly called psychosis manic depression are characterized by changes in the mood disproportionate in their duration and intensity. Cheerfulness becomes exaggerated euphoria, sadness is expressed by deep depression. The behavioral disorders that accompany these phases deeply disrupt the life of the affected person and degrade their family and professional relationships. Bipolar disorder is an illness that can be serious and requires long-term treatment.
 
The symptoms of bipolar disorder are cycles of alternating phases of excitement, also called mania, and depression. These cycles are often linked by periods when the mood is normal. They vary in intensity, duration, and frequency from person to person. The alternation of symptoms can be impressive, between hyperactivity, aggressiveness, absence of inhibition, then sadness, depression, and total demotivation. According to the symptoms, sometimes referred to as bipolar disorder type 1 and type 2. Type 1 bipolar disorder is characterized by one or more manic or mixed episodes with or without major depressive episodes. Bipolar disorder type 2 combines at least one major depressive episode with hypomania.
 
A person in the manic phase is unusually euphoric, energetic, hyperactive, or aggressive. The individual is elated and conceives of unreasonable confidence in himself.  He no longer has inhibition, does or says what goes through his mind, without worrying about the consequences of his actions and words. 
He has a very high opinion of himself and does not take any criticism. He is irritable and gets carried away over nothing. His thinking is accelerated. He talks a lot, follows several ideas at the same time, digresses from one topic to the next without always a logical connection. He is teeming with often incongruous projects, moves constantly never feel tired.
He may forget to eat for several days and sleep little. His sexual urges are heightened. This state can last for several days or even several weeks. Some sufferers enjoy these manic episodes in which they feel invincible and think that nothing and no one can resist them. Some of them prove to be very successful professionally or very creative, during a manic phase. But mania has mostly negative consequences. The person can act thoughtlessly and cause real upheaval in their life (quitting their job or spending recklessly, for example). Sometimes people with bipolar disorder end up in trouble with the law for crimes committed during manic phases. What is hypomania? A hypomania is a mild form of mania. The person is very energetic, behaves impulsively or recklessly, frequently quarrels with those around him. Her condition is agreeable to her and she denies being sick all the more easily as her troubles do not interfere too much with her daily life. Hypomania is often an early sign of bipolar disorder.
 
When the depressive phase sets in, discouragement sets in within a few days or weeks. The higher the manic phase, the deeper the depression will be. From hyperactive, the person becomes indifferent to everything, downcast. The symptoms are those of severe depression, such as sadness, overwhelm, slowing down of thought and movement, constant fatigue, lack of motivation, sleep, and appetite disturbances. These manifestations last two to three times longer than the manic phases, often from several weeks to several months. Suicidal ideation is common. Suicide is wrongly considered by the patient as the only way to free himself from his illness and no longer subject those around him to it.
 
In some patients, there are so-called mixed phases. During these periods, the person simultaneously presents symptoms of mania and depression: restlessness, disturbed sleep, and appetite, suicidal thoughts, etc.
 
Mixed phases are sometimes observed between the end of a panic attack and the start of a depressive episode. A cycle is made up of a manic phase, a depressive phase, and possibly the normal phase that separates them. The length of a cycle is very variable, ranging from a few hours to a year or more. The frequency of cycles is also very variable. Most untreated patients experience eight to ten manic depressive cycles in their lifetime, but others will experience several cycles in a year. The disease is said to cycle rapidly when the person develops more than four cycles in the year. Treatments and living conditions influence the frequency of repetition of cycles. A patient who is well cared for and surrounded will be more likely to see the cycles spaced out.
 
When the background treatment with mood regulators is effective, the intensity and frequency of manic cycles decrease significantly, allowing the person to return to a normal life. After several months of treatment, the cycles may become less frequent until they disappear completely. For this reason, all people with bipolar disorder should be treated.
 
Without treatment, cycles continue and their frequency may increase. The intensity of manic and depressive phases can also worsen. In some cases, ill people develop symptoms of psychosis, hallucinations, and delusions, insistently defending false and illogical beliefs despite evidence to the contrary. The complications of bipolar disorder are manifold. Left untreated, an estimated 25% of people with bipolar disorder make one or more suicide attempts. The risks of alcoholism and drug addiction are significant and the associated behavioral disorders can have serious consequences, including divorce, dismissal, or imprisonment.

Bipolar disorder sufferers often resort to a mixed combination of treatment: talk therapy and medications. I would recommend talking with a psychiatrist for a medication consult after being diagnosed. Talk therapy can be provided by a licensed therapist.