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Symptoms

Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition that causes extreme mood swings.

The main symptoms of bipolar disorder are episodes of extreme highs and lows, which can last for several weeks.

Treatments for bipolar disorder include medicines and talking therapies.

Read more on the NHS website.

The main symptoms of bipolar disorder are episodes of extreme highs and lows, which can last for several weeks.

Symptoms of bipolar disorder

People with bipolar disorder have episodes of:

Symptoms of bipolar disorder depend on which mood you're experiencing.

Unlike simple mood swings, each extreme episode of bipolar disorder can last for several weeks (or even longer).

Read more on the NHS website.

Treatments for bipolar disorder include medicines and talking therapies.

Medical treatments

If a person is not treated, episodes of bipolar-related mania can last for between 3 and 6 months.

Episodes of depression tend to last longer, often 6 to 12 months.

But with effective treatment, episodes usually improve within about 3 months.

Most people with bipolar disorder can be treated using a combination of different treatments.

These can include 1 or more of the following:

  • medicine to prevent episodes of mania and depression – these are known as mood stabilisers, and you take them every day on a long-term basis
  • medicine to treat the main symptoms of depression and mania when they happen
  • learning to recognise the triggers and signs of an episode of depression or mania
  • psychological treatment – such as talking therapies, which help you deal with depression and provide advice on how to improve relationships
  • lifestyle advice – such as doing regular exercise, planning activities you enjoy that give you a sense of achievement, and advice on improving your diet and getting more sleep

Read more on the NHS website.