Bipolar II Disorder

There are three types of bipolar disorder, also called manic depression. Bipolar II is a psychological disorder that causes episodes of depression and hypomania.

The symptoms of hypomania are feelings of euphoria, irritability, higher than usual sex drive, insomnia, and difficulty concentrating. An episode of hypomania is a milder form of a manic episode.

Bipolar II causes episodes of depression. The common symptoms of depression include suicidal thoughts, feelings of hopelessness and helplessness, insomnia or hypersomnia, irritability, difficulty concentrating, and a lower sex drive than usual.

Hallucinations and delusions can be symptoms of severe depression. Hallucinations and delusions from depression reflect the depressed mood of the individual. An example is feeling that the world is a painful place and then having the delusion that they must kill their children in order to save them from the pain.

Bipolar II disorder is at least partially hereditary. A family history of bipolar I, bipolar II, or depression makes the person more susceptible to developing bipolar disorder than the general population.

There is no cure for bipolar disorder. Severe episodes of bipolar II disorder can occur even with treatment though many people with bipolar disorder are able to manage the illness.

With treatment, most people can be gainfully employed and lead normal lives. Severe symptoms can cause problems for the person that affect their jobs and relationships. Some people struggle with the symptoms and need support like Social Security Disability.

Treatment for bipolar disorder includes medication and therapy. Typical medications for bipolar II are a antidepressant and a mood stabilizing medication like Depakote or Lithium. Too much of an antidepressant can cause hypomania symptoms.

If a person diagnosed with bipolar II has a manic episode, the diagnosis is typically changed to bipolar I. If an antidepressant causes hypomanic symptoms, the person may be considered as having bipolar III. The diagnosis of bipolar III is not one of the official diagnoses in the DSM IV.

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