Bipolar disorder, you have just been diagnosed. So what do you need to know about it? The short answer is that you better learn all you can about it. You must know everything about a depressive disorder. You would also need to know what a manic episode entails. In fact, knowledge of a hypomanic episode would go a long way. There are very good reasons why this knowledge is essential. If you want to manage bipolar disorder, this level of knowledge is key to achieving that goal.
The knowledge you gain about bipolar disorder enables you to learn how to manage the disorder. By controlling your disorder, you get the best chance of regaining control of your life. Normally, this disorder occurs in cycles. By this I mean that each person has a regular pattern that he follows for each of his cycles. For example, let’s take a person with type 1 bipolar. A common pattern for this is a hypomanic episode – manic episode – depressive episode. This is often followed by a period of stability.
A hypomanic episode can be treated much more easily than a manic episode. That said, there is often a danger regarding hypomania. The danger is simply this. Many people find that the advantages of a hypomanic episode outweigh the disadvantages. The result is that they do not recognize that they are experiencing a hypomanic. Another possibility is that they do not seek treatment for hypomania. The unfortunate result is that a manic episode arrives. These are much more difficult to treat than hypomanic episodes.
The old saying “What goes up must come down” certainly applies with regard to a mania episode. These are often followed by a depressive disorder. Type 2 bipolar and cyclothimaic disorder do not normally lead to mania. However, a depressive disorder is very likely to follow hypomania. For a person with bipolar disorder, type 2, depression can last a long time. This can take months or even longer.
In my experience, recovery from depression often only happens when the affected person tries to make it happen. By this I mean that they must want to recover and go to great lengths to make sure they do. Remember, not all people go from mania to depression. By knowing the disorder, the affected person (or their friends and lovers) can recognize any bipolar episode at the earliest possible moment. For some people, their cycle begins with a depressive disorder.
Regardless of the order in which your cycle runs, it is imperative to seek professional help. This should be done the first time you suspect that you are experiencing a bipolar episode. This provides the best possible chance of controlling the disorder. In turn, the best chance of regaining control of the life of the affected person is experienced.