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Gilroy Hubert- Bipolar Disorder

  1. T H I S A P R O J E C T F O R A H I G H S C H O O L A P P S Y C H O L O G Y C O U R S E . T H I S I S A F I C T I O N A L I Z E D A C C O U N T O F H A V I N G A P S Y C H O L O G I C A L A I L M E N T . F O R Q U E S T I O N S A B O U T T H I S B L O G P R O J E C T O R I T S C O N T E N T P L E A S E E M A I L T H E T E A C H E R , L A U R A A S T O R I A N : L A U R A . A S T O R I A N @ C O B B K 1 2 . O R G DISCLAIMER:
  2. G I L R O Y H U B E R T A P P S Y C H O L O G Y 5 - 1 1 - 1 5 Bipolar Disorder
  3. What is Bipolar Disorder?  Bipolar Disorder is a mood disorder where the patient suffers from episodes of euphoria and high energy, known as mania, and episodes of depression
  4. Symptoms and Results of Bipolar Disorder  Bipolar disorder’s only major symptoms are the extreme mood swings that the patient experiences  However, these can have terrible effects on a person’s life, such as poor job performance, damaged social lives, and even suicide during episodes of depression
  5. Graphic Representation of Bipolar Disorder  The symptoms of Bipolar disorder can affect behavior and cognitive functions
  6. People affected with the disorder  Bipolar disorder usually occurs during the late teen and early adult life, with at least half of the cases occurring before the age of 25
  7. Diagnosis  Bipolar disorder can last a life time  The symptoms can also come back over time  Doctors diagnose Bipolar disorder using the DSM guidelines  To be diagnosed with the disorder, a patient must suffer from major changes from one’s normal mood or behavior
  8. Types of Bipolar disorder  Bipolar I: Manic episodes last at least 7 days, or are so sever that the patient must be hospitalized. Depression lasts about 2 weeks.  Bipolar II: Depressive episodes occur in a pattern, but manic episodes do not occur.  Bipolar Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (BP-NOS): Symptoms of illness exist, but do not meet criteria for Bipolar I or II.  Cyclothymic Disorder: mild form of bipolar disorder, patient has episodes of mania or depression lasting 2 years
  9. Risk Factors  The cause of Bipolar disorder is currently unknown.  However, studies show that there is not necessarily one single cause.  Multiple factors may play a part in the onset of Bipolar disorder
  10. Genetics  Bipolar disorder is genetic, with certain genes making it more likely that a person will develop the disorder.  However, genes are not the only risk; in twin studies, identical twins do not always both develop the disorder
  11. Co-Existing Illness  People with Bipolar disorder commonly suffer from substance abuse.  Anxiety disorders can also occur, including PTSD and social phobias.  ADHD can co-occur with the disorder as well.
  12. Effects on Brain Structure  People with Bipolar disorder have very different brains from people without it.  The prefrontal cortex, which is involved in decision making, of people with Bipolar disorder are smaller than normal.
  13. Treatment  Bipolar disorder cannot be completely cured  However, it can be treated for the long term with mood stabilizers such as Lithium.  Keeping a daily life chart and noting mood daily mood symptoms.
  14. Side Affects of Treatment  The side affects of lithium can include:  Restlessness  Dry mouth  Bloating/indigestion  Brittle fingernails  Discomfort in the cold  Muscle and joint pain
  15. Details About the Disorder
  16. Manic Stage  The manic stage of bipolar disorder feels wonderful! All of the sudden, I get a sudden burst of energy and feel like I can conquer the world.  Occasionally, I also go on shopping sprees that can be quite harmful to my credit card. Sometimes, I buy things without even thinking about it!  During my manic stages, I also partake in some substance abuse, more specifically cocaine. This makes the stage feel even more vivid! This stage lasts about 5 days for me, all 5 of which are wonderful.  When in a manic stage, I completely forget about my depression!
  17. Depressive Stage  These stages are the worst. I feel so miserable, I rarely leave my bed. I sometimes contemplate suicide as well. The whole day feels like I’m trapped in an empty void. These stages tend to last 2 weeks.  The only thing I can think about during this stage is when I’ll begin to feel normal again. I also partake in substance abuse, but during this stage I consume marijuana to ease the depression and get through the day.
  18. Treatment  My doctor makes me take lithium for the disorder. When I do take it, my manic stages are shorter and less intense, which is awful. However, my depressive stages are somewhat better.  My normal stages occur more frequently and last longer. It also eases the anxiety I feel in the normal stage.  I believe that the positives of the medication outweigh the cost, and I have even stopped using drugs, so I will continue to take it.
  19. Normal Stage  Sometimes, I am in neither a depressive or manic state. I feel what most people would consider “normal”.  However, this does not mean I feel fine. On the other hand, I become anxious about when I will enter my next depressive stage and ashamed of the things I had done in my previous manic stage.  Feeling “normal” does not last very long, but when it does occur, it lasts for a few days, and feels just as bad as a depressive stage.
  20. Side Effects  Some of the side-effects of the lithium have been dreadful. For example, I can no longer stand being in cold weather, so winters are painful. It has also been hard to get around because my muscles ache.  Despite this, the treatment is starting to work even more, making these side effects irrelevant.
  21. Post-Treatment  I have been taking the lithium medication for several years now, and I can hardly tell the difference between my manic and depressive stages!  Most of the time, I feel normal, and the wild shopping sprees have stopped altogether.
  22. Social Life  Before my treatment, I had almost no friends outside of my family. Those I had before my symptoms developed began to be unable to stand me.  During manic stages, I would annoy my old friends, and during depressive stages, I refused to hang out with them.  Once I began taking my medication, I was easier to be around and have long term relationships with.
  23. Career  I did not have an occupation before my symptoms began to take effect. However, once they did, it was clear that I could not hold a job.  I applied for a few during manic stages, but they would usually call me back during depressive stages, so I would just not answer the phone.  Although I did land some jobs, I usually quit them during a depressive stage or got fired for being off task in a manic stage.  After my treatment, I was able to get a job and stay employed in it! I work as an accountant to this day!