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Bipolar Disorders

What Are Bipolar Disorders?

Bipolar disorders are brain disorders that reason changes in a person’s mood, energy and capability to function. Bipolar disorder is a category that contain three different conditions — bipolar I, bipolar II and cyclothymic disorder.

People with bipolar disorders have great and intense emotional states that happen at distinct times, called mood episodes. These mood episodes are categorized as manic, hypomanic or depressive. People with bipolar disorders normally have phase of normal mood as well. Bipolar disorders can be care for, and people with these illnesses can lead full and productive lives.

Bipolar I Disorder

Symptoms of Bipolar I Disorder

Bipolar I disorder can reason dramatic mood swings. During a manic episode, people with bipolar I disorder may feel high and on top of the world, or uncomfortably irritable and “revved up. “ During a depressive period they may feel depressing and hopeless. There are often periods of normal moods in between these episodes. Bipolar I disorder is diagnosed when a person has a manic episode.

Bipolar II Disorder

Bipolar II disorder involves a person having at least one major depressive episode and at least one hypomanic episode. People return to normal function between episodes. People with bipolar II often first seek treatment because of depressive sign, which can be severe.

People with bipolar II often have other co-occurring mental illnesses such as an anxiety disorder or substance use disorder.


Treatments for bipolar II are like to those for bipolar I — medication and psychotherapy. Medications most usually used are mood stabilizers and antidepressants, depending on the specific sign. If depression indication is severe and medication is not working, ECT (see above) may be used. Each person is different and each treatment is individualized.

Cyclothymic Disorder

Cyclothymic disorder is a milder form of bipolar disorder linking many mood swings, with hypomania and depressive sign that happen often and fairly constantly. People with cyclothymia experience emotional ups and downs, but with less severe sign than bipolar I or II.

Cyclothymic disorder symptoms include the following:

For at least two years, many periods of hypomanic and depressive symptoms, but the sign do not meet the criteria for hypomanic or depressive episode. During the two-year period, the symptoms (mood swings) have lasted for at least half the time and have never stopped for more than two months.


Treatment for cyclothymic disorder can engage medication and talk therapy. For many people, talk therapy can help with the stresses of ongoing high and low moods. People with cyclothymia may start and stop treatment over time.

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