Mental health awareness has gotten pretty common around the world. May is considered the month of mental health now. Since it has been overlooked for a long time, there are plenty of misconceptions about mental illnesses. Bipolar disorder is portrayed in different television series, but that has made way too many myths about it. Everyone has mood swings, they’re absolutely normal. Although they can get annoying at times, we can still endure them. Bipolar disorder involves intense shifts in mood. These severe mood swings ranging from euphoria to depression, which can last for hours, days, or even months. The symptoms of bipolar disorder can get worse without treatment. In order to treat it, it is important to differentiate between the myths and facts about bipolar disorder.
Myths About Bipolar Disorder
These days many people are dealing with mental illnesses. The myths and stigma around it can make it difficult for them to seek help. Hence, gaining knowledge about them will not only help you but also others who are suffering. Here are 5 myths about bipolar disorder.
Myth: Only adults suffer from bipolar disorder
Children and teens can have bipolar disorder, as well. In fact, most people with bipolar disorder develop it before entering adulthood. Most children are unruly and hyperactive, so these symptoms often go unnoticed. It’s a part of childhood. Teens, on the other hand, have several mood swings due to hormonal changes. It is difficult to diagnose bipolar disorder in teenagers because it’s generally linked with other mental health conditions, such as ADHD and anxiety. After diagnosis, they get treatment through psychotherapy. So, don’t think it’s impossible if you see your child showing symptoms of bipolar disorder.
Myth: Mania is productive and exciting
In the early periods of mania, it may seem to be enjoyable. You have lots of energy and can survive without sleeping for a long time. However, there’s no guarantee that the “high” will remain the same. People can easily get irritable and restless, as mania can make them lose control over their minds. They often make reckless and impulsive decisions during a manic episode. As a result, they may face a loss in their finances, career, and relationships. For example, a manic episode can make people overspend or drive recklessly, both of which can have negative effects. In addition to that, it causes people to talk rapidly and constantly switch topics because of jumpiness.
Myth: Genes can’t be a cause of bipolar disorder
Even though science is unclear about the role of genes in developing bipolar disorder, it’s still considered a strong risk factor. Bipolar disorder can run in families, making many individuals inherit it from their relatives. If your close relative has bipolar disorder, you have a high chance of developing it. Other mental health conditions can cause bipolar disorder, too. So, if psychotic disorders, such as depression or schizophrenia are common in a family, the children are more likely to develop bipolar disorder. These conditions are common in the general public, which is why it isn’t difficult to inherit the bipolar disorder.
Myth: Bipolar disorder just makes you moody
Bipolar disorder includes periods of mania and depression, also known as highs and lows. These shifts in mood are different from the normal mood swings we experience from time to time. It’s not just having a good day or a bad day. In bipolar patients, these mood swings can be triggered or may occur without any particular reason. Manic and depressive episodes can last for several days, weeks, or months. These symptoms aren’t always mild and manageable, which is why some patients need hospital care. Along with that, bipolar disorder puts people at a lifetime risk due to suicidal thoughts.
Myth: You can’t support someone with bipolar disorder
It isn’t easy to live with a bipolar family member or partner. It comes with a different set of challenges, however, it isn’t impossible to help your loved ones. During their mood swings, they can make mistakes out of impulse and recklessness. It’s important to be forgiving and to create a plan to avoid any future damage. All they need is your support, which you can provide by simply listening non-judgmentally. Family therapy and self-help techniques can be helpful, as well. Dealing with bipolar disorder is difficult, and patients often feel misunderstood. Show them your willingness to understand and your affection. Having a loved one by their side can be beneficial for their mental health.
How to Help People With Bipolar Disorder?
If you think that you or someone you know has bipolar disorder, you should learn more about the symptoms. In order to treat any illness, it’s crucial to understand it. There are many reputable websites raising awareness about mental health, such as Healthcanal.com. They provide answers to all the questions and doubts about mental illnesses, including bipolar disorder. However, the best is still to consult with a mental health professional in order to get evaluated properly. Bipolar disorder is treated through psychotherapy and medications, which contribute to improving patients’ mental health.