Mood disorders are conditions that cause people to feel intense, prolonged emotions that negatively affect their mental well-being, physical health, relationships and behaviour. Although everyone feels depressed at some time or the other, when such depression lasts longer usual, you may be showing signs of bipolar depression.
Bipolar affective disorder is characterised by intense mood swings and changes in thinking and behaviour (mania). Bipolar disorder is characterised by mood swings, which oscillates between high (mania) and the low (depression). Mania is an unusually high mood for the person.
People may feel like their thoughts are racing and may feel hyperactive. They may feel unrealistically confident, happy, or very powerful. Many people do not sleep much when they experience mania. They may act without thinking and do risky things they would not normally do.
Symptoms of mania may include
- extreme optimism
- euphoria and feelings of grandeur
- rapid, racing thoughts and hyperactivity
- a decreased need for sleep
- increased irritability
- impulsiveness and possibly reckless behaviour
Any person can develop bipolar affective disorder. Bipolar disorder is likely caused by many different factors that work in concert including family history, biology, the environment, life experiences, personality and physical health problems.