depression can make it hard to do the things you want and need to do. the best way to avoid mood swings is to get treatment. you may not be able to totally prevent bouts of mania or depression. at first, mood swings may take you by surprise. but over time, you might start to see patterns or signs that you’re entering a period of mania or depression. sometimes, you may notice that there are specific things that can trigger mania or depression, such as getting too little sleep, changes to your daily routine, or jet lag when you travel. one good way to spot your triggers is to keep a journal. over time, you might see some patterns. but if you can recognize the things that are likely to bring on mania or depression, you can prepare for times when you might be most vulnerable.
work with a mental health professional to plan what to do when you think a mood swing might happen. if you see the signs of potential trouble, get help. you might be able to stop a minor change from becoming a serious problem. when people with bipolar disorder are depressed, they almost always know that something is wrong. but it’s different for people who are manic. or if they notice a difference in their mood and personality, they think it’s an improvement. you might be able to get tons of work done. so what’s the problem? you might have affairs that ruin your marriage. most dangerous of all, mania can make you do things that risk your life or the lives of others.
but if your mood shifts dramatically between extreme highs and lows, it may be a sign of bipolar disorder. shifts in your emotions and mood are a normal, common, and healthy way to react to events that take place in our lives, says robert mcferren, a licensed independent clinical social worker and clinical director at the pathlight mood and anxiety center in seattle. on the other hand, moods last longer — for hours or days — and are not necessarily specific to a situation. in contrast, mood episodes that last days, weeks, or even months are a defining feature of bipolar disorder, according to the american psychiatric association (apa).
that said, if your significant mood changes are affecting your ability to function as usual and causing problems with your relationships, work, social activities, or other important parts of your life, it’s important to get a proper diagnosis from a mental health professional based on the symptoms you’re experiencing, as well as your overall health history. the consequences of mood episodes can even be life-threatening. the most effective treatment for bipolar disorder is a combination of psychotherapy (also known as talk therapy) and medication, according to mcferren. experts suggest letting your loved one know if you notice any concerning changes in their behavior that could signal the start of a mood episode.
created for family members of people with alcohol abuse or drug abuse problems. answers questions about substance abuse, its symptoms, different bipolar disorder causes extreme mood swings that include emotional highs (mania or hypomania) and lows (depression). if you or a loved one has bipolar disorder, learn more from the experts at webmd about identifying the triggers that may lead to disruptive, .
find out how experts distinguish between normal mood changes and bipolar disorder, when you should seek help, and tips for managing both. bipolar disorder is characterised by extreme mood swings. the mood swings can range from extreme highs (mania) to extreme lows (depression). this brochure describes the signs and symptoms, risk factors, and treatment options for bipolar disorder (also known as manic-depressive illness),, .
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