Bipolar disorders are a brain disorder that cause extreme and significant changes in mood and energy. Also known as manic-depressive, people with bipolar illness swing from being elated and “up” (manic episodes) to hopeless, sad or “down” (depressive episodes). Bipolar disorder affects almost six million adults in the U.S. each year, and is typically divided into three categories – bipolar I, bipolar II and cyclothymic disorder. At Oceanfront Recovery, our experienced and compassionate therapists understand that untreated bipolar disorders may have a hand in your struggle with addiction. We treat your mental health while we work through your addiction, helping to ensure a more successful recovery and lifetime of sobriety.

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Symptoms of Bipolar Disorders


Each of the types of bipolar disorders involve clear and intense shifts in mood, energy, and activity, called mood episodes. These extreme emotional episodes are categorized as manic, depressive, or hypomanic. Hypomanic is still an upswing in mood, but are less severe than a true manic episode. People who suffer from bipolar disorders will also have normal moods, and diagnosis can sometimes be difficult because their symptoms will vary according to what type of episode they’re experiencing at the time.

Manic Episodes


Manic episodes are when you experience three or more of the symptoms listed below for most of the day for at least a week at a time. Manic episodes are severe and may cause problems in your relationships, as well as an inability to function normally. When in the throes of a manic episode, you may:

  • Feel elated, high or ecstatic
  • Have lots of energy and feel restless or jumpy
  • Feel agitated, edgy or irritable
  • Have trouble sleeping
  • Be more active than usual
  • Feel as if your brain is racing
  • Talk loudly, fast or more than usual
  • Be agitated, irritable, or “touchy”
  • Overschedule or multitask to the extreme
  • Engage in risky behavior

Manic episodes will usually last at least a week in those patients with bipolar I or bipolar II disorder. In cyclothymic bipolar disorder, the manic and depressive episodes last about half that time. In some cases, hospitalization may be necessary during a manic episode to ensure your safety.

Hypomanic Episodes


If you experience hypomanic episodes, they exhibit the same symptoms as a manic episode, but they are less severe. They do not cause as many problems as manic episodes, and last for about four days.

Once your mood swings to a depressive episode, you may:

  • Feel down, extremely sad, empty or hopeless
  • Have very low energy and feel tired all the time
  • Decrease your activity levels and no longer enjoy things you used to
  • Have trouble sleeping – either too much or too little
  • Changes in appetite
  • Feel worried and anxious
  • Have trouble focusing, concentrating and forget things
  • Have frequent thoughts of death or suicide

A major depressive episode is defined as lasting for two weeks, and you have at least five of the above symptoms, including one of the first two symptoms.

Risks of Bipolar Disorder


The acute highs and lows of bipolar disorder can cause a major disruption in your life, affecting your life both professionally and at home. People who suffer from bipolar disorder often have other mental health disorders, as well as substance abuse issues. Genetics are a factor in bipolar disorder, and between 80 and 90 percent of people who have the disorder have a relative who suffers from bipolar disorder or depression. Environmental factors can compound the problem in people who are already vulnerable, and episodes may be triggered by stress, sleep deprivation and alcohol or drug use.

Reach out today!


If you or a loved one exhibits symptoms of bipolar disorder or has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and also suffers from addiction, contact Oceanfront Recovery today at 877.279.1777. You will speak confidentially with one of our experienced intake specialists, who will help you get started on your journey to recovery.

877.279.1777