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Recognizing Signs of Bipolar Disorder

woman looks out the window and considers the benefits of being sober

Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition that affects millions of people around the world. Unfortunately, it can often be difficult to recognize and diagnose bipolar disorder in an individual due to its wide array of symptoms and its tendency to mimic other conditions. It’s important to understand what bipolar disorder is and the various signs that might indicate a person has this condition. If you or a loved one are struggling with bipolar disorder in addition to a substance use disorder, it’s important to seek help. Bipolar disorder therapy programs can help people manage their symptoms and reach a place of sustainable recovery.

What Is Bipolar Disorder?

Bipolar disorder is classified as a mood disorder characterized by extreme shifts in mood, energy levels, activity levels, and concentration or focus. These shifts are typically referred to as “mood episodes” which can vary in length from days to months at a time. There are several categories of bipolar disorder, including:

  • Bipolar I – This is the most severe form of bipolar disorder and is characterized by manic episodes that last for at least one week.
  • Bipolar II – This form of bipolar disorder is characterized by less severe manic episodes known as “hypomania.”
  • Cyclothymic disorder – This is a milder form of bipolar disorder and involves episodes of hypomania and depression that last for extended periods of time.

Symptoms may vary depending on the type of bipolar disorder present in an individual.

Common Signs of Bipolar Disorder

The most common sign associated with all types of bipolar disorder is depression or periods where an individual will experience low energy levels, sadness or hopelessness for extended periods of time. Other signs may include:

  • Irritability or agitation during manic episodes
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Racing thoughts
  • Extreme restlessness or impulsiveness during manic episodes
  • Feeling unusually energized or hyperactive during manic episodes

Additionally, some individuals may experience delusions orhallucinations during severe manic episodes, which should be taken seriously if they persist over long periods of time.

Bipolar Disorder and Addiction

Bipolar disorder is often comorbid with other mental health conditions, including addiction. Why? Substance use can provide an individual with temporary relief from the signs of bipolar disorder, and this, in turn, can lead to a cycle of addiction. Substances excacerbate signs of bipolar disorder, which can result in them needing to use more drugs or alcohol in order to manage their symptoms.

This does not mean that individuals with bipolar disorder cannot recover from addiction, however. With the help of a comprehensive treatment program that addresses both disorders simultaneously, it is possible to break the cycle of addiction and manage signs of bipolar disorder.

Treatment typically involves a combination of evidence-based therapies like cognitive-behavioral therapy, psychotherapy, and psychopharmacology. These treatment methods can help an individual gain better control over their signs and symptoms of bipolar disorder, as well as provide them with the necessary tools to maintain long-term recovery.

A dual diagnosis treatment program is the best way to effectively manage signs of bipolar disorder and addiction. This approach ensures that all signs of bipolar disorder are addressed, and any underlying causes of the addiction are addressed as well.

Contact Roaring Brook Recovery for Treatment That Makes a Difference

At Roaring Brook Recovery, we specialize in providing comprehensive dual diagnosis treatment programs to best address signs of bipolar disorder and addiction. Our team creates an individualized treatment plan and works with each participant to ensure that their signs of bipolar disorder are completely addressed. We use evidence-based therapies to help our participants create sustainable changes in their lives and develop the necessary coping strategies to maintain long-term recovery.

Contact our team at 855.590.9944 or connect with us online to learn more.