A to Z: Bipolar Disorderenparentshttps://kidshealth.org/EN/images/headers/P-khAZDictionary-enHD-AR1.jpgLearn about depressive disorders, mental illnesses, and conditions that affect moods and the brain.Bipolar disorder, manic depression, manic-depressive disorder, manic-depressive illness, bipolar mood disorder, bipolar affective disorder, depressive disorders, mania, depression, mental illness, suicide, fatigue, mood stabilizers, brain, central nervous system, mood disturbance08/14/201303/22/201909/02/201946a32e47-b9c0-4e68-8fbb-a15bd885fd9dhttps://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/az-bipolar.html/<p><a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/dictionary/"><img class="right" title="Parents image" src="https://kidshealth.org/EN/images/buttons/P-atoZDictionary-enBT.jpg" alt="A to Z Dictionary 500 Go" name="5093-P_ATOZDICTIONARY2_ENBT.JPG" /></a></p> <p><strong>May also be called: Manic Depression; Manic-Depressive Disorder; Manic-Depressive Illness; Bipolar Mood Disorder; Bipolar Affective Disorder</strong></p> <p>Bipolar disorder is a type of mood disturbance characterized by episodes of low-energy <a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/understanding-depression.html/">depression</a> (symptoms include sadness, fatigue,&nbsp;and hopelessness) and high-energy mania (signs include increased energy, sleep loss, and&nbsp;reckless behavior).</p> <h3>More to Know</h3> <p>Bipolar disorder is a type of depressive disorder, a medical condition that affects the way a person's <a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/brain-nervous-system.html/">brain</a> functions. Someone with bipolar disorder will go through episodes of mania and at other times experience episodes of depression.</p> <p>Doctors aren't sure exactly what causes bipolar disorder, but they believe it's linked to imbalances in certain brain chemicals called neurotransmitters. If the neurotransmitters aren't in balance, the brain's mood-regulating system won't work the way it should.</p> <p>Often, episodes of mania or depression last for weeks or months, but they can change rapidly, even during the course of a day. During manic episodes, a person with bipolar disorder may have increased energy and activity, an elevated mood, racing thoughts, difficulty concentrating, and less need for sleep. He or she may also exhibit poor judgment and engage in reckless or aggressive behavior.</p> <p>Periods of depression are marked by a loss of energy, prolonged sadness, feelings of guilt or worthlessness, sleeping and eating problems, and thoughts of death or suicide.</p> <p>Treatment for bipolar disorder typically involves the use of medications, such as mood stabilizers, along with counseling or <a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/finding-therapist.html/">psychotherapy</a>.</p> <h3>Keep in Mind</h3> <p>There's no cure for bipolar disorder, but most people who have it&nbsp;can be helped if a psychiatrist or psychologist diagnoses the disorder. Without treatment, bipolar disorder can get worse, but by following a treatment plan and making a few lifestyle changes &mdash; such as reducing stress, eating well, and getting enough sleep and exercise &mdash; people living with bipolar disorder can usually control their symptoms and lead normal lives.</p> <p><em>All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.</em></p>
5 Ways to Help Yourself Through DepressionIt's important to take action against depression - it doesn't just go away on its own. In addition to getting professional help, here are 5 ways to feel better.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/teens/depression-tips.html/55fdf5eb-0627-463c-94e2-a43d7822d692
Bipolar DisorderBipolar disorders are one of several medical conditions called depressive disorders that affect the way a person's brain functions. Find out more about bipolar disorder.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/teens/bipolar.html/4a2e14e8-c372-47a8-bb43-25d7dd9ff2a1
DepressionDepression is very common. For more information about depression and feeling better, check out this article.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/teens/depression.html/313901c9-c72a-4f03-831b-94ab61da2856
Finding Low-Cost Mental Health CareIf you need mental health care but don't think you can afford it, you're not alone. Get tips on finding low-cost or free mental health care in this article for teens.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/teens/mhealth-care.html/1d8bc05d-7696-4dda-910b-0d06f3855508
Sadness and DepressionEveryone is sad once in a while. But depression is a sadness that goes on too long and hurts too much. Find out more in this article for kids.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/kids/depression.html/f5bae932-e007-4fc5-b712-271e8bdff1ab
Stress & Coping CenterVisit our stress and coping center for advice on how to handle stress, including different stressful situations.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/teens/center/stress-center.html/31890be1-2161-48bf-9246-74d3be74d3b3
Taking Your Child to a TherapistMany children and teens have problems that affect how they feel, act, or learn. Going to therapy helps them cope better, feel better, and do better.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/finding-therapist.html/36c31f3c-0467-4e71-8c7e-c6274c9f2c8f
Talking to Parents About DepressionIf you feel depressed, you need to reach out for help and support. Read our tips for teens on talking to parents about depression.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/teens/talk-depression.html/e9b2e976-c37c-4c41-82c4-90e6bffaf1ad
When Depression Is SevereSevere depression can cloud a person's thinking and lead some people to think that life isn't worth living. But severe depression can be treated. Find out what to do and how to get help in this article for teens.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/teens/severe-depression.html/f8a6f7b0-feaf-499d-b2a1-ebdb48a21c3d
Why Do People Get Depressed?There's no one reason why people get depressed - many different things can play a role. Find out more about the things that can trigger depression.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/teens/why-depressed.html/d1e33cf3-a49d-4f8e-863b-f9423ee608d5
Word! DepressionIt's normal to feel sad sometimes, but if you feel that way for a long time, and you never feel happy, it's called depression.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/kids/word-depression.html/ce7dbc50-c60b-4ef6-a18f-f15a0a5406ad
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