Bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression, is a life-long illness affecting the chemistry of the brain. In classic cases, it causes severe mood swings from manic episodes of extreme highs to depressive episodes of debilitating lows, with relatively normal periods in-between.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, over 2 million people age 18 and older have been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
Unfortunately, there is no cure for bipolar disorder at this time. But as with any chronic illness, such as diabetes, heart disease or epilepsy, proper treatment, management and understanding of the illness is crucial. Most people with bipolar disorder can lead full,
productive and satisfying lives by taking crucial steps to control and manage their illness. Some key steps to consider if you or a loved one have bipolar disorder include:
1. Find a mental health professional you trust. A person diagnosed with bipolar disorder needs to establish a relationship with a trusted mental health professional where an open and honest exchange can take place.
2. Take medication as prescribed. This is first and foremost the most important...