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What is Bipolar Disorder?

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Bipolar Disorder Critical Thinking May 29, 2014 Bipolar Disorder Bipolar disorder, also called manic depression disorder/illness can be defined in many ways. One definition is a mood disorder in which a person swings back and forth between wild euphoria and frenetic bursts of energy (the manic phase) to such deep, dark, and overwhelming depression that a person may contemplate or attempt suicide. (Hirshkowitz & Smith, 2004, p. 107) This illness/disorder seems to affect both men and women in about equal numbers and can get increasingly worse if left undiagnosed or even untreated. Types of Bipolar Disorder Bipolar disorder can be broken down into four basic types. Bipolar I disorder, bipolar II disorder, bipolar disorder not otherwise specified (BP-NOS), and cyclothymic disorder or cyclothymia. Bipolar I disorder, which is defined by manic or mixed episodes that may last up to seven days, or by manic symptoms that are so severe that the person needs immediate hospital care. Usually, depressive episodes occur as well typically lasting at least two weeks. ("NIMH • Bipolar Disorder", n.d., p. 4) Bipolar II disorder is a pattern of depressive episodes and hypomanic episodes, but no full-blown manic or mixed episodes. ("NIMH • Bipolar Disorder", n.d., p. 4) Bipolar disorder not otherwise specified (BP-NOS) is diagnosed when symptoms of the illness exist but do not meet diagnostic criteria for either bipolar I or bipolar II. However, the symptoms are clearly out of the person’s normal range of behavior. ("NIMH • Bipolar Disorder", n.d., p. 4) The last type of bipolar disorder is cyclothymic disorder or cyclothymia which is a mild form of bipolar disorder. People with cyclothymia have episodes of hypomania as well as mild depression... ... middle of paper ... ...nd stable life. References Bipolar Disorder Help Guide - Helpguide.org. (n.d.). Retrieved May 29, 2014, from http://www.helpguide.org/topics/bipolar.htm Carlson, N. R. (2005). Foundations of physiological psychology. Boston: Pearson A and B. Hirshkowitz, M., & Smith, P. B. (2004). Sleep disorders for dummies. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley Pub. Mayo Clinic Staff (n.d.). Bipolar disorder Prevention - Diseases and Conditions - Mayo Clinic. Retrieved May 29, 2014, from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/bipolar-disorder/basics/prevention/con-20027544 NIMH • Bipolar Disorder. (n.d.). Retrieved May 29, 2014, from http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/bipolar-disorder/index.shtml Womble, D. M. (2005). Introductory mental health nursing. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
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