Bipolar Disorders and Mood Swings
Bipolar disorder (the new name for manic-depression) refers to experiencing mood swings that cannot be explained by a person’s reacting to something happening around them or to ideas they are having. It refers to “two poles” or extremes of mood from being “up” to “down and depressed.” When “up,” often times the person feels more energetic or happy than seems justified by their situation and the feeling can include so much energy that the person doesn’t seem to need rest and feels that they can “do anything” and “lick the world” at the same time they don’t “have a care in the world.” Our staff of licensed therapist and counselors can help you achieve solid footing as you travel the stepping stones of healthy change.
At those especially energized times, the person may do something that they seriously regret later. The person’s mood may then swing rapidly to feeling depressed, like sinking on an elevator into a dismal basement of a building, and then experience very negative thoughts about themselves, their life and their future.
This feeling “down” is unusually severe and doesn’t go away as quickly as would be expected if a person simply had a bad experience. The swings in feelings can happen fairly rapidly, even within a day, or they may take days, weeks or months. Although everyone experiences some swings in mood, they are usually related to events in the person’s life and may not be as extreme.
With a bipolar disorder, the mood swings seem to be unlinked. Drinking and recreational drugs, irregular eating and sleeping patterns, and unpredictable activity patterns can make these swings much worse.