Hey guys...I’m sure you have seen a lot of mental health talk on social media and just the press in general. Which is great! Because this means people are finding it important or at least an interesting topic...and knowing that lots of people suffer from mental illnesses and are talking about it. Like Mariah Carey who came forth about her bipolar disorder in People magazine...I know what you are all going to say, but this post isn’t late. I say that because what keeps happening is people don't stop talking about something but then after a few weeks the topic isn’t “hot” anymore.Guess what, Mariah is still suffering from this condition and so are millions (over 3 million cases in the U.S. to be exact) of people with bipolar and other mental health conditions.
Do not be afraid because I’m here to continue the convo.
Something I find interesting was the fact that many people out there think that mental health issues don’t pertain to them or that it’s not important...under all that is a little of misunderstanding or even a negative perception of those suffering from these conditions. Let’s look at it this way...if you got a stomach ache are people going to view you differently? Well I hope not...not to say that a stomach ache is the exact same but where I am going at is that it’s a pathology going on in your gut, and I hope you go out to your doctor and get proper treatment and management. The same is with mental health conditions, there is a pathology in the brain...and I hope we are all supportive and guide those friends and family members to proper health care and management.
Something I also noticed with this Mariah Carey news, was the number of people who came to tell me that it made sense for her to have bipolar disorder because of the whole “I don’t know her” stuff with Jlo as if bipolar is multiple personality disorder. That’s when I was like...wait a minute, that’s not bipolar disorder and the more I went around asking people, the more I noticed many don’t know what bipolar is.
Which then made me think, this misunderstanding is what adds small little drops of water to the giant pond of negative perception about mental health.
The not knowing. So I am here to change that.
Remember this isn’t a tool for self diagnosis but a platform of communication and discussion...if you or someone you know is suffering from symptoms like these go see your doctor!
Bipolar disorder used to be called manic depression which actually describes it perfectly. Why bipolar though...because it is two polls of emotion highs (with mania) and lows (with depression)...with episodes of mood swings throughout the year. If kept under control these episodes can be less frequent.
There are two kinds of bipolar, bipolar I and bipolar II, which are actually. Two separate diagnosis. The changes in symptoms are unpredictable and can be really distressful with significant problems in life.
What makes it bi-polar?
It is the mood episodes of mania with the depression. The mania can be manifested as such:
Abnormally upbeat, jumpy or wired
Increased activity, energy or agitation
Exaggerated sense of well-being and self-confidence (euphoria)
Decreased need for sleep
Poor decision-making — for example, going on buying sprees, taking sexual risks or making foolish investments.
The depression episodes can be seen as:
Depressed mood, such as feeling sad, empty, hopeless or tearful (in children and teens, depressed mood can appear as irritability)
Marked loss of interest or feeling no pleasure in all — or almost all — activities
Significant weight loss when not dieting, weight gain, or decrease or increase in appetite (in children, failure to gain weight as expected can be a sign of depression)
Either insomnia or sleeping too much
Either restlessness or slowed behavior
Fatigue or loss of energy
Feelings of worthlessness or excessive or inappropriate guilt
Decreased ability to think or concentrate, or indecisiveness
Thinking about, planning or attempting suicide
One problem with people suffering from bipolar is that many don’t recognize the instability it’s causing their lives and those around them. Most of them like the feeling of euphoria and the feeling of being more productive, they tend to really. Hate the depression symptoms.
Unfortunately bipolar disorder doesn’t get better on its own, but it is managed with medications and therapy, so please seek professional support.
A great book I found is Manic by Terri Cheney, where the author tells her story how she dealt with bipolar disorder...link is also in my library page.
If you have any other concerns or comments please don’t hesitate to contact me.