Bipolar is characterised by changes in moods, the cycle and severity depending on the type of bipolar.

Dr Andy Montgomery

Dr Andy Montgomery (MbBChir, PhD, MRCP, MRCPsych)

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People with bipolar disorder have periods or episodes of:

  • Depression – feeling very low and lethargic
  • Mania – feeling very high and overactive (less severe mania is known as hypomania)

Symptoms

The symptoms of bipolar disorder will depend on mood being experienced. Each mood can last from a few days to  several weeks (or even longer), and are very different to the mood swings associated with normal day to day life. Sufferers may not experience a ‘normal’ mood very often.

Diagnosis

It is crucial that a psychiatric assessment is carried out as bipolar disorder is often misdiagnosed due to there being variations in symptoms and type. Many people suffer for many years before a diagnosis is made allowing them to access treatment which can often be highly effective at reducing the intensity and duration of symptoms. It is therefore very important that you seek help early.

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I came to Dr [-] for a variety of problems that I had been having with extreme irritability, anxiety and depression. These issues were investigated further by this doctor and I was diagnosed with bipolar spectrum disorder. Dr [-] then wrote a detailed report, with treatment recommendations to my GP. With a diagnosis I have been able to have a trial of medication, which is starting to make a significant improvement to my mental health. Highly recommend.