Characterized by drastic, uncontrollable mood swings, Bipolar disorder affects approximately 5.7 million Americans according to the National Institute of Mental Health. Also referred to as manic-depressive disorder, this mental illness can have devastating consequences if left unchecked, with alternating periods of mania—or extremely “up” behavior—and depression severely interrupting a sufferer’s ability to function normally in daily life.
There are four basic classifications of Bipolar disorder:
- Bipolar I Disorder
- Bipolar II Disorder
- Cyclothymic Disorder
- Unspecified Bipolar Disorder
With all types, drastic shifts in mood and energy levels are experienced, but there are different criteria separating each category above. Understanding what type of Bipolar disorder a patient suffers from is important for planning proper treatment.