Bipolar Disorder - Types

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What are the types of bipolar disorder?

Bipolar disorder has a number of types, including bipolar type I and bipolar type II disorder. Depending on how rapidly the mood swings occur, the episodes of bipolar disorder can also be classified as mixed (mood disordered episodes that last less than the usual amount of time required for the diagnosis) or rapid cycling (four or more mood disordered episodes per year). About two-fifths of people with bipolar disorder have at least one period of rapid cycling over the course of their lifetime. For every type and duration of the illness, the sufferer experiences significant problems with his or her functioning at school, at work, or socially, may require hospitalization, or may have psychotic symptoms (for example, delusions or hallucinations). The diagnosis of bipolar I disorder requires that the individual has at least one manic episode but does not require a history of major depression. Bipolar II disorder is diagnosed if the person has experienced at least one episode of major depression and at least one episode of hypomania (a milder form of mania).

A mixed episode is defined as a period of time in which both the criteria to diagnose a major depressive episode and a manic episode are fully met, except for the duration requirements of each. The mood problem (manic alternating with depressive symptoms) takes place nearly every day for a total of at least a week.

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Comment from: Mike, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: August 12

As a kid I grew up in poverty and as is the culture in the deep south United States, was whipped by parents and teachers for every thing. I joined the military at 19 years old and was hospitalized while in the military for psychotic symptoms, extreme fatigue and auditory and visual hallucinations. At 38 years old I was finally diagnosed with bipolar disorder. My father has schizophrenia and has been on meds for years. So I had the family history, and stress associated with poverty and military life that finally broke me. In live in Germany now with my second wife and children. I am taking 600 miligrams of seroquel, ( quetiapine) daily.

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Comment from: queen bee, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: March 13

I have bipolar disorder also generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). I have intense fatigue, racing thoughts, insomnia, very little motivation, self-loathing; the list goes on and on. I've been noticing in the last few months I have developed a verbal tic. I also have started avoiding people and I don't like being away from home.as a result I don't go to a doctor. I have been on medications, but all the fun side effects keep me from them. I gained 5 lbs. I'm just going to the pharmacy to fill the Depakote. I'm at wits end so maybe I will make an appointment at the clinic. I'm caught between a rock and a hard place.

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