Bipolar and Bipolar 2 are similar in that they are both mental disorders, and that they both cause moods to cycle. However, there are many differences between the two conditions, and the treatment of each is different as well. Understanding bipolar symptoms and treatments are the key to overcoming both of these conditions.
For some, Bipolar 2 does not cause a complete disruption in their life, as the elevated mood, or hypomanic episode, is not as extreme as in those with basic Bipolar disorder. Bouts of depression are also associated with this condition, though they may be fleeting. Both types of Bipolar disorder require treatment, as symptoms can worsen over time. Left untreated, dangerous behaviors and hospitalizations are a very real possibility.
It is estimated that six million individuals in the United States alone suffer from some type of Bipolar disorder. Research shows that the first signs start to show themselves at some point between the teen years, up until the first part of the 20′s. This does not apply to everyone, though few individuals over the age of 50 develop a bipolar disorder. No one is immune to developing this condition, and no one is quite certain what causes it. There has, however, been evidence to show that these conditions may be genetic. Meaning, those with family members that have either Bipolar or Bipolar 2 have a higher chance of developing these disorders.
Hypomanic episodes somewhat resemble the symptoms of ADHD, with fast speech, loud speech, high energy, and a lack of concentration being prominent. Other symptoms include being over-confident, overly optimistic, and quite risky in behavior. Since these episodes can go on for months, it may be hard to know if this is just a person’s personality, or some type of disorder. One an episode of hypomania ends, depression usually follows it. Though it may not be immediately, this is the general cycle of symptoms reported with Bipolar 2. Both symptoms require some type of treatment to keep them from becoming too severe.
Left untreated, this condition can turn into true mania. For this reason, medication is often required. For hypomania, mood stabilizers, such as lithium, Depakote, and Lamictal are often prescribed. Anti-psychotics are another option, with Abilify and Risperdal being two of the most popular. Additionally, tranquilizers such as Xanax and Valium are often prescribed.
Anti-depressants may also be needed in order to control bouts of depression. Paxil, Zoloft, and Prozac are among the top choices for treating not only Bipolar associated depression, but other types of depression as well. After experiences months of hypomania, sufferers can sink into deep depression. Bipolar 2 depression is easy to spot if you have been around a person that has been on a hypomanic episode for months.
Since little is known about what causes Bipolar 2, there is no known way to prevent it. It may, however, be controlled successfully through a combination of medication and therapy. Many that use the combination of both of these treatments find that their symptoms decrease over time.