A dive into the types of Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is an illness of lifetime. It is characterized by dramatic changes in the behavior, energy and the mood of a person. A child suffering from Bipolar disorder toggles between the episodes of depression and mania. An extremely elevated mood suddenly switches into extreme sadness and vice versa. The duration of the episodes can last for a few days and sometimes can extend for a longer period of time. These symptoms can take a toll on the overall health of the child and can pose a lot of hindrances in their learning journey. Let us learn about the types of Bipolar disorders.

Image source: fightbipolardisorder.com
Image source: fightbipolardisorder.com
Types of Bipolar Disorders:

The change from the normal mood or behavior of your child can specify the symptoms. The types of Bipolar disorders are:

  1. Bipolar I Disorder: This disorder is characterized by periods of mixed and manic episodes. These episodes last for a week. Sometimes, the manic symptoms are extremely severe and can propel the patient to be hospitalized due to its severity. At times, one may witness depressive episodes lasting for a span of 2 weeks also.
  2. Bipolar II Disorder: This disorder usually depicts milder forms of hypomanic and depressive episodes. The threat of committing suicide is persistent throughout this disorder.
  3. Cyclothymia: It is also known as Cyclothymic disorder which is characterized by mild depression of hypomania for a span of 2 years or so.
  4. Bipolar disorder not otherwise specified:  The symptoms of this disorder do not meet the specification of neither Bipolar I Disorder nor Bipolar II Disorder. But manic and depressive episodes are present in the child.

ADHD, Anxiety disorders and other mental disorders can also co-exist with bipolar disorder in children. A blend of medications and psychotherapy is used to treat the symptoms of this disorder in children. If you find that your child needs help ensure that you call his/her doctor. Never leave the child alone.

Handling a child suffering with Bipolar disorder can be hard on parents. But there is also a lot of help available outside. You can always rely on psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, mental health counsellors, mental health programs in medical colleges and peer support groups for support and guidance.

Reference:

http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/bipolar-disorder-in-children-and-adolescents/index.shtml