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Bipolar Disorder

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“Bipolar disorder is a severe biologic illness characterized by recurrent fluctuations in mood. Typically, patients experience alternating episodes in which mood is abnormally elevated or abnormally depressed-separated by periods in which mood is relatively normal (Oztalay, 2011). The following is a short synopsis according to the DSM-IV-TR, “Criteria for Bipolar Disorder” includes a distinct period of abnormality and persistently elevated, expansive, or irritable mood for at least:- 4 days for hypomania- week for mania (DSM-IV-TR, 2000). During the period of mood disturbance, at least three or more of the following symptoms have persisted and have been present to a significant degree:- Inflated self-esteem or grandiosity- Decreased need for sleep- More talkative than usual or pressure to keep talking- Excessive involvement in pleasurable activities that have a high potential for painful consequences (Oztalay, 2011). Psychodynamics of the Disease The onset of the disease usually occurs during late adolescence or in the mid twenties. However, the disease has been known to occur up into the fifth decade of life. The mood swings that accompany this disorder are of several types. They are as follows: the Pure Manic Episode, evidenced by hyperactivity, excessive enthusiasm, and flight of ideas, constant wakefulness without sleep, Impairment in normal social functioning usually requiring hospitalization; Hypomanic Episode, evidenced by a milder form of the Pure Mania, without the loss of normal functioning that would require hospitalization; Major Depressive Episode, characterized by depressed mood consisting of symptoms such as anhedonia, avolition, alogia, affective flattening and thoughts of suicide and death; the last episode associated with Bipolar disorders is the Mixed Episode in which, patients experience symptoms of mania and depression simultaneously. The combination of high energy and depression puts them at significant risk of suicide (Lehne, 2002).

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