Are you wondering how to tell if someone is bipolar? How do you know if your bipolar? It all comes down to being able to recognize symptoms of bipolar II disorder. Knowing what specific traits signify a hypomanic episode or a depression episode will help you decide whether or not further treatment should be sought. Bipolar II can be a scary thing when it first arises somewhere in your life. It is important to realize that it is not a death sentence and can be managed completely.
Before we go into the common symptoms of bipolar 2 disorder so that you can learn how to tell if someone is bipolar, it is important to note that the symptoms are often very vague. When I say they are vague, I mean can be very difficult to distinguish whether or not the person is exhibiting a symptom of the mental illness or if they are simply having an off day. Treating the situation with extreme sensitivity and empathy is essential. You do not want to outright tell someone that they have a mental disorder when you may not be 100% correct. After you learn how to tell if someone is bipolar, the best thing you can do is refer the potentially bipolar II loved one to a qualified mental health care professional.
People with Bipolar II disorder will have several “episodes” throughout each year of their lives that are caused by their incapacity. These episodes will take the form of either hypomania or depression. Each episode will probably last for at least a few days, so make sure not to assume someone is experiencing an episode just because they are having a bad day. Even if they are having a bad week, they still are probably not suffering from bipolar II disorder. Knowing how to tell if someone is bipolar includes being able to identify several separate episodes that have been exhibited by the person in the span of one year.
Hypomania is a less severe mania and is the key symptom that distinguishes Bipolar II from Bipolar I. Someone with Bipolar 2 will have at least one hypomanic episode during the year. During these periods of time, they will seem extremely happy, confident, or overzealous. Uncommon behavior and reckless spending of money are common symptoms of an episode of hypomania. Your loved one will probably show little need for sleep during this episode and will be constantly moving or hyperactive.
The other side of the bipolar II coin is the episodes of depression. During this time period, the person will be extremely down on themselves, will sleep much longer than usual, will have extended periods of despair or sadness, and could possibly have thoughts of suicide. Depression episodes in Bipolar II patients are generally less severe than those in bipolar 1. However, this does not mean that they should be taken lightly or go untreated.
Once again, if you believe that someone in your life may be suffering from this mental illness, it is in your hands to refer them to a qualified medical professional for treatment. Learning how to tell if someone is bipolar is good to know, but you need to leave it up to the professionals to decide for sure.