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Doctor insights on: How Do You Tell Unipolar Depression And Bipolar Disorder Apart

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How do you tell unipolar depression and bipolar disorder apart?

How do you tell unipolar depression and bipolar disorder apart?

Mood Swings: By definition bipolar disorder requires the presence of either cycles of alternating mood or severe and debilitating mood swings. In unipolar depression the concern only has to do with depression. ...Read more

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Dr. Alan Ali
1,717 doctors shared insights

Bipolar Disorder (Definition)

Also known as manic-depressive illness, bipolar disorder is a brain disorder that in its most severe form causes dramatic shifts in mood, from mania to depression. Symptoms of mania include markedly elevated mood and energy, reduced sleep and a reduced need for sleep, racing thoughts, and grandiose ideas. When mood changes are severe, psychotic ideation may be present. Symptoms of depression can include low energy, feeling sad, feelings of guilt and hopelessness that are out of proportion to the patient's actual situation, low motivation, inability to experience pleasure, and suicidal ideation. Sleep may be increased, and concentration may be impaired. Some manic patients may be extremely irritable rather than euphoric. Less severe but clearly abnormal mood ...Read more


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Can you have bipolar disorder (manic depression), then gradually become more and more depressed, until it just becomes unipolar (depression)?

Can you have bipolar disorder (manic depression), then gradually become more and more depressed, until it just becomes unipolar (depression)?

That is not quite: How it works. A person with bipolar disorder has periods of markedly ^ energy, ^ impulsivity, elated or irritable mood as well as separate periods of low mood & energy. (a mixed state is also possible).However, I have seen bipolar individuals who over the years, developed one long, chronic depressive episode. Their manic or hypomanic episodes can sort of die out over time. But it is still >>. ...Read more

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What is the difference in treatment for unipolar depression vs. bipolar disorder?

What is the difference in treatment for unipolar depression vs. bipolar disorder?

Bipolar vs Unipolar: with unipolar depression- antidepressants are the first "go -to" meds. With bipolar depression - mood stabilizers and antispychotics are the first go too's. ...Read more

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Can you tell me how to cure depression and bipolar disorder?

Can you tell me how to cure depression and bipolar disorder?

No cure: There is no cure for depression or bipolar disorder. The most we can do is manage the symptoms. For bipolar disorder, medication is best. With depression, depending on the severity, people can use natural treatments, exercise, medication and therapy. If you have bipolar depression, medication is the best option for symptom control. ...Read more

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Can you tell me how to make my mom to get treatment for her depression and bipolar disorder?

Depends: States have civil commitment laws that govern involuntary psychiatric treatment if specific legal criteria are meet. Absent this treatment can't be forced. ...Read more

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Tell me if depression form into bipolar disorder?

Either a person has: A predisposition for bipolar disorder or they don't. However, a person may initially have one or more episodes of clinical depression & then at a later time have either a hypomanic or a manic episode (s). These are periods of ^ energy, ^ impulsivity, ^ productivity with agitated, irritable or euphoric mood. At that point it would become apparent that the person has some form of bipolar disorder. ...Read more

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Can any doc tell me what's the difference between bipolar disorder and bipolar depression?

Bipolar: Bipolar disorder is an overall mood disorder which includes episodes of both mania and depression. Bipolar depression is just one of the "poles" of the disorder. Treatment with mood stabilizing medications can often help with both mania and depression in bipolar disorder. Depression is often more chronic than manic episodes, and can cause more ongoing suffering. ...Read more

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I have depression or bipolar disorder, how can I tell?

I have depression or bipolar disorder, how can I tell?

You might...: If you have severe depression ; bipolar runs in your family, you might have it. Are you on medication? Talk to your therapist or prescribing physician ; they can help you decide whether you are suffering from depression or bipolar. Have you ever had a "manic" episode? ...Read more

Dr. Pamela Pappas
4,484 doctors shared insights

Depression (Definition)

Depression is a mood disorder that can affect behavior and emotions. Symptoms of depression include feeling down most of the time, losing interest in previously enjoyable activities, increase or decrease in appetite or weight, sleeping more or less, becoming easily agitated or lethargic, feeling worthless, feeling guilty, having difficulty concentrating, thinking more about death and dying. Depression can sometimes result in suicidal thoughts and plans. In this case, emergent ...Read more


Dr. Donald Jacobson
737 doctors shared insights

Manic Depressive Disorder (Definition)

Though depression is not required for diagnosis most people have both manic and depressive episodes and may have mixed episodes with features of both. Length of episodes vary, but are separated by "normal" periods of emotion and behavior. See my answers to similar ...Read more