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The Diagnosis and Treatment of Bipolar Disorder Versus Unipolar Depression

Powerful Essays
The Diagnosis and Treatment of Bipolar Disorder Versus Unipolar Depression

Bipolar disorder is a serious mental disorder, but unfortunately our collective knowledge of this mental illness is not extensive. Unlike depression, where patients are strictly sullen and deeply blue, the bipolar patient experiences that same depression only flanked by extreme highs—a hyperactivity and increase in serotonin. It is this inconsistency in mood—a clinical mood swinging, that makes bipolar disorder so difficult to diagnose. Difficulty, as will be discussed in the paper, comes from patients inability to recognize these highs as potentially troublesome, and instead opt to focus only on the depressed moods that follow. Conventional thought, after all, is not to worry or see a doctor should one suddenly have increased energy and enthusiasm. The result is a overwhelming understanding of other illnesses, but significantly less of bipolar, especially of these highs, or hypomanic episodes patients feel. This paper will first discuss bipolar disorder, its symptoms and prognosis. The errors in diagnosing bipolar disorder and how this leads to confusion surrounding treatments will also be discussed. An investigation in to the diagnosis and treatment of bipolar disorder will reveal a strong inconsistency in treatment stemming from lack of conclusive knowledge about the disorder. While many doctors suggest antidepressant use, while others will utilize lithium, and mood stabilizers, and in fact this range of treatments is in fact responsible for the lack of holistic understanding of the disorder as a chemo-physiological disease, but also as a separate entity from traditional, or what is often referred to as unipolar depression.

According to the Americ...

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