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Dual Diagnosis for Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is often called “manic depression”. Even though over 5 million Americans suffer from this condition, it is often misunderstood and misdiagnosed. Public perception is that bipolar disorder is a seriously debilitating disease. Many people fear that they will be committed to treatment or an asylum because the disorder cannot be controlled. Fortunately, this is not the case with bipolar disorder. When individuals are diagnosed and treated in a timely manner, professional health treatment centers can help those with bipolar disorder to live a happier and more fulfilling life.

There are certain criteria for diagnosing bipolar disorder and it consists of episodes of mania. When this occurs, there are hugely elevated levels of energy that occur within thought and behavior. Most often, this also occurs with episodes of severe depression. Its not unusual for an individual to suffer from bipolar disorder to also have mania and depression. This is known as being in a mixed state.
Many people dont know that there is no one biological test that can be used to diagnosis bipolar disorder. Although patients have been studied, there is no one common link among the patients that specifically leads to bipolar disorder. Bipolar disorder is often misunderstood and misdiagnosed as other ailments, such as schizophrenia. Patients receive the wrong mental illness treatment as a result. At other times, the symptoms are so mild that the individual may go undiagnosed and unaware of their disorder for years.

This isnt to say that bipolar disorder is harmless if untreated. In some severe cases, individuals may attempt suicide during depressive episodes. They can also exhibit dangerous behavior towards others even if it isnt normally part of their character. Violent behavior often rises from delusions and hallucinations. Substance abuse can also be a contributing factor to bipolar disorder. This is a complex illness and dual diagnosis treatment centers have effective treatment programs.
Generally, its a good idea to get professional help as soon as symptoms are recognized. Mood abnormality can be extreme and unpredictable. Like other mental illnesses, bipolar disorder is easier to treat if it is caught early on.

Sovereign Health of California is a center for dual diagnosis that specializes in helping manage mental health illnesses.

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