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Mixed Bipolar Disorder

bipolar disorder

What Is Mixed Bipolar Disorder?

Mixed bipolar disorder is a form of mental illness. In most forms of bipolar disorder, moods alternate between elevated and depressed over time. A person with mixed bipolar disorder experiences both mood ‘poles’ -- mania and depression -- simultaneously or in rapid sequence.

Who Gets Mixed Bipolar Disorder?

Virtually anyone can develop bipolar disorder. About 2.5% of the U.S. population suffers from some form of bipolar disorder -- almost six million people.

Mixed bipolar disorder is a common pattern in people with bipolar disorder. Estimates vary widely, but between 20% and 70% of people with bipolar disorder experience mixed episodes.

Those who develop bipolar disorder at a younger age, particularly in adolescence, may be more likely to have mixed bipolar disorder.

Most people are in their teens or early 20s when symptoms from bipolar disorder first start. Nearly everyone with mixed bipolar disorder develops it before age 50. People with an immediate family member with bipolar are at higher risk.

What Are the Symptoms of Mixed Bipolar Disorder?

Mixed bipolar disorder is defined by periods of mania and depression that occur at the same time, or in rapid sequence. These combined manic-depressive periods are called mixed mania or mixed manic episodes:

Mania in mixed episodes usually involves irritability, racing thoughts and speech, and overactivity or agitation.

Depression in mixed bipolar disorder is similar to ‘regular’ depression, with feelings of sadness, loss of interest in activities, low energy, feelings of guilt and worthlessness, and thoughts of suicide.

This may seem impossible -- how can someone be manic and depressed at the same time? Because mixed manic episodes are a form of mental illness, they defy any predictable pattern of feelings or behavior.

For example, a person in a mixed manic episode could be crying uncontrollably while announcing they have never felt better in their life. Or they could be exuberantly happy, only to suddenly collapse in misery. A short while later they might suddenly return to an ecstatic state.

Mixed manic episodes can last from days to years, if untreated. Mixed bipolar disorder episodes tend to last longer than other forms of bipolar disorder.

People with ‘regular’ bipolar disorder may appear to have mixed bipolar disorder while under the influence of alcohol, cocaine, or other drugs.

What Are the Risks of Mixed Bipolar Disorder?

The most serious risk of mixed bipolar disorder is suicide.

 People with bipolar disorder are 10 to 20 times more likely to commit suicide than people without bipolar disorder. Tragically, 8% to 20% of people with bipolar disorder eventually lose their lives to suicide.

Evidence suggests that during mixed episodes, people may be at even higher risk for suicide than people in episodes of bipolar depression.

People with bipolar disorder are also at higher risk for substance abuse. Nearly 60% of people with bipolar disorder abuse drugs . Substance abuse is associated with more severe or poorly controlled bipolar disorder.

bipolar disorder

Surce: webmd.com

Other links:

What is Bipolar disorder?

Symptoms & Types of Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar I Disorder

Bipolar II Disorder

Bipolar Disorder in Children

Put Nightmares to Bed

Fruits and Personalities

Color Psychology

Focus on Happy


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