8 Myths About Bipolar Disorder That You Shouldn’t Believe

Myth 1: BAR Is A Split Personality Disorder

These are two different diagnoses. A split personality is officially called dissociative identity disorder: a person switches from one ego state to another at different intervals.

People with this diagnosis may feel that several personalities coexist in their heads as if they are alternately taking control.

Each character may have a different history, name, age, nature, and habits. Other symptoms of dissociative identity disorder include partial memory loss and problems with processing stress and self-identity.

In bipolar disorder, a person may experience sudden mood swings from depression to mania or hypomania (a condition similar to focus but with less pronounced manifestations) for no apparent external reason.

During a depressive episode, a person experiences emotional collapse, and during a manic episode – maximum mental uplift.

This instability affects sleep quality, behavior, and the ability to act and make decisions.

Myth 2: Bipolar Disorder Is A Fashionable Diagnosis. Its Cases Are Isolated

Between 2.4 and 6.5 percent of the world’s population is estimated to experience some form of bipolar disorder.

Making this diagnosis is not easy because there is no one simple test or biomarker.

A specialist performs a multi-step clinical assessment: gathering a mental health history, finding out the severity and duration of symptoms, and tracking the cyclicality of episodes.

The earlier the disorder is identified, the sooner treatment can begin. With the proper regimen, patients can find themselves in persistent remission.

Myth 3: Depressive And Manic Episodes Are Cyclical

It’s not that simple. These periods have no timetable: some people with IDD experience them all the time, while others experience them once or twice a year.

There are intervals in which there are no symptoms at all. There may also be a mixed affective state, with simultaneous experience or rapid alternation of symptoms from both the manic and depressive spectrums—for example, sadness and despair- and a burst of energy.

Also, bipolar disorder has several types, which are characterized by different symptoms:

Type I BAD

In this case, manic episodes tend to alternate with depressive episodes, but the presence of depression is not necessary for diagnosis.

Mania lasts from seven days, and sometimes, its symptoms are so pronounced that a person may need hospitalization.


Here, in contrast, depressive episodes are usually experienced. A state of hypomania may occur, but there is never a full-blown mania.


These are chronic changes in states. For at least two years, a person is constantly in mild depression or hypomania.

Periods of everyday mood also occur, but they do not last more than eight weeks.

Some cases do not fit the description of BAD type I or II or cyclothymia but are also characterized by periodic bright spikes in emotional state.

Myth 4: Bipolar Disorder Is Just Frequent Mood Swings

There is more to bipolar disorder than just alternating mood swings. It seriously affects aspects of your life, from your ability to concentrate to the quality of your sleep.

Suicidal thoughts and guilt can occur during depressive episodes, while manic episodes can cause frightening self-belief, nervousness, and a tendency to engage in risky behavior.

In addition, people with type I or type II BAD may develop co-occurring disorders, such as melancholia and psychosis, during episodes.

Myth 5: People With Bipolar Disorder Can’t Work Or Have Relationships Normally

Difficulty finding employment is a problem often faced by people with BAD.

They are just as capable as anyone else, although in some cases, they may have to try harder to control their thoughts and moods.

Employment can also help them build self-confidence and make their lives more orderly.

But, what kind of work to choose depends on individual preferences, episodes’ manifestations, and frequency.

For example, some people find it more convenient to work on projects, others find it fortunate to have a steady workload, while others need a flexible schedule.

People facing bipolar disorder can make romantic and friendly relationships.

More than that, the support of buddies and partners can help with treatment.

For example, loved ones can make sure the person takes prescribed medications regularly, remind them to see a specialist and spot the signs of the onset of a manic or depressive episode in time.

Myth 6: Manic Episodes Are A Period Of Joy

This is only sometimes the case. Mania and hypomania can be accompanied by a burst of energy, mood elevation, and sometimes even euphoria.

But these states have other, less pleasant manifestations. About this, there are essays on websites that write essays for you free.

For example, during manic episodes, people with BPD may become irritable or distracted.

There is a decreased need for rest, which worsens the general condition of the body.

The person may struggle to concentrate, make decisions, and become unusually talkative and agitated.

All this can negatively affect performance relationships with friends, family, and colleagues.

If left untreated, manic episodes can develop into psychosis. When a person with BAD reports experiencing hallucinations or sharing strange ideas disconnected from reality, it is necessary to consult a specialist urgently.

Myth 7: A Person With Bipolar Disorder Is Bound To Have Children With The Same Diagnosis

The exact causes of bipolar disorder are unknown. Experts believe that the possibility of hereditary transmission of the disease is not excluded, but it is impossible to predict whether it will happen.

A child from a family with BAD cases may not face the disorder himself.

A more popular theory for the onset of the disease is an imbalance of neurotransmitters: norepinephrine, serotonin, and dopamine.

When norepinephrine levels are off the charts, mania can set in, and when they drop, depression occurs.

Periods of acute stress, deep emotional distress such as the death of a loved one, drug or alcohol addiction, illness, unstable sleep patterns, or severe problems in life can trigger BAD.

But these factors are not the root cause of the disease: just from a couple of sleepless nights or a period of moneylessness, bipolar disorder does not develop.

Myth 8: The Only Way To Help People With Bipolar Disorder Is Through Medication

Medications, such as antipsychotics and mood stabilizers, can indeed ease the course of the illness so that the person can control the manifestations of mania and depression.

For each patient, the specialist selects an individual therapy regimen. Sometimes it is necessary to test several combinations of drugs to find a suitable option.

But in addition to medication, there are other ways to cope with the symptoms of episodes of the disease:

Engage In Psychotherapy

It helps to understand the nature of emotions, thoughts, and behavior changes and learn to control them.

Find support from loved ones. Friends, relatives, and partners can monitor a person’s regime, offer him different practical activities, and spend time together.

Lead A Healthy Lifestyle

Good nutrition, regular exercise, and sleep positively affect general health and brain function.

However, none of these methods can guarantee complete freedom from the disorder.

Usually, people with BAR face the manifestations of the disease throughout their lives.

However, adequately selected drug therapy and a combination of different ways of combating the disorder can help to achieve persistent remission.

In this state, a person with IDD can work, make friends, have romantic relationships, and enjoy entertainment – in short, live life to the fullest.

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