“Bipolar disorder can be a great teacher. It’s a challenge, but it can set you up to be able to do almost anything else in your life.”
— Carrie Fisher —
Bipolar Disorder is a mental health condition where the individual suffers from extreme mood swings, ranging from high mood swings known as manic episodes to low mood swings known as depressive episodes.
These states of emotions are usually prolonged and last from a few hours to a few days. Episodes can occur a few times in a year or every few days if the condition is severe. Timely treatment can reduce the negative impacts of bipolar affective disorder and help the patient cope with the symptoms more effectively.
Types of Bipolar Disorder
Depending on the severity of the condition, there are two types of bipolar affective disorder:
Type 1 – This is the most severe form of the condition, and patients suffer repeated and prolonged episodes of depression and mania.
Type 2 – Here, patients have very severe depression, but mild forms of mania.
About 1.3% of Australians currently live with Bipolar Disorder, with approximately 50 people being diagnosed each year
Around 1% of Australians will experience Bipolar Disorder Type 1 at least once in their lifetime
Bipolar Disorder Type 2 affects about 5% of the Australian population
Research shows that it takes about 10-20 years from the time of the first manic episode for doctors to diagnose the condition as Bipolar Disorder
According to a Coryell study, marriages of 45% of the respondents (all of whom had been diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder) ended in divorce
Watch out for these symptoms of Bipolar Disorder
During manic episodes:
Feeling of euphoria
Very high energy levels
Low attention span and irritability
Excessive and dangerous self-confidence
Unpredictability in behaviour and poor decision-making
During depressive episodes:
Intense feelings of guilt, hopelessness, loneliness and fear
Withdrawal from people
Extreme loss of interest in life
Lethargy and fatigue
Feelings of worthlessness
Loss of appetite and insomnia
Our holistic approach to treatment for Bipolar Disorder
Our psychiatrists, psychologists and allied health professionals will work with you to help you manage your Bipolar Disorder.
Psychiatric treatment for Bipolar Disorder
Our psychiatrists will carefully assess your mental health history, in particular for any previous episodes of mania or hypomania when working with depressed patients. Some patients with treatment-resistant depression may possibly have undiagnosed Bipolar Disorder.
Once the diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder is made, our psychiatrists may prescribe medications to treat your mania and/ or depression symptoms. These medications are important since they treat and prevent the recurrence of symptoms by controlling the biological changes taking place inside your brain, which cause the onset of the symptoms.
While these treatments can’t permanently cure the bipolar affective disorder, you will find that medication and therapy will help you cope with the condition and lead more fulfilling lives.
Psychological treatment for Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar Disorder can be a relapsing and debilitating condition. Early psychological care and medical treatment are essential to cope with the condition. At Mind Oasis, our trained psychologists can use psychological therapy in conjunction with your prescribed medications to help you better cope with your Bipolar Disorder symptoms and prevent relapse.