Bipolar disorder is a complex mental health condition characterized by dramatic and unexpected changes in a person's mood. Contrary to popular belief, there is more than one type of bipolar disorder. According to the American Psychiatric Association (APA), there are five types, each defined by the presence, type, frequency, and intensity of your moods. The DSM-5 lists four main categories of bipolar spectrum disorders, as well as substance-induced versions of illness and other medical conditions, such as stroke or traumatic brain injury. The four main types of bipolar disorder are Bipolar I, Bipolar II, Cyclothymia, and Unspecified Bipolar Disorder.
Bipolar I is characterized by manic episodes with or without symptoms of depression. These manic episodes can last for a week or longer and can be so severe that hospitalization is required. Bipolar II is similar to Bipolar I but with less severe manic episodes, called hypomanic episodes. People with this type of bipolar disorder experience a major depressive episode before or after they have had a manic episode. Cyclothymia is a milder form of bipolar disorder where the ups and downs are not severe enough to meet the criteria for major manic or depressive episodes.
Unspecified Bipolar Disorder is present when symptoms do not fit the other three categories but still involve episodes of unusual manic state. If you are looking for help with bipolar disorder, it is important to seek professional help. A diagnosis of bipolar disorder is based on a person's medical and psychiatric history, symptoms, and an examination of physical and mental condition. Screening questionnaires, family history, and specific questions during the clinical interview can help build the case for bipolar disorder. Once diagnosed, treatment for bipolar disorder typically includes medication and psychotherapy. Mood stabilizers such as lithium are commonly prescribed to help manage symptoms.
Antidepressants may also be prescribed to help with depressive episodes. Rapid transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) has also been found to be effective in treating depression and may help people with bipolar disorder. It is important to remember that you don't need to deal with bipolar disorder on your own. If you are looking for help, call our office at 701-207-9841 or book an appointment online today.