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Old 05-01-2009, 12:01 AM   #1
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Exclamation bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

hey. i've had a long history of battling a disorder. i am positive i have major depression/anxiety and slight ocd (thoughts and so forth. no rituals) i was diagnosed bipolar a few times, but i dont really fit the criteria. i was only manic twice in my life. the first time was part drug induced and i stopped paxil cold turkey which can turn you manic. the second time it was drug induced as well, and i was messing with my medication again on my own. i'm not sure if i'm bipolar. I know that anti-psychotic medication reacts very bad with me -- it has the opposite effect. instead of calming me it makes me anxious and paranoid and delusional. Other than those two times, i've never been manic. I was on antidepressants alone all through life, and never had a manic episode. I am not sure what I am, what to do. I'm at my wits end. I am starting intense outpatient therapy for women at a mood disorder clinic, top of the line, they research everything and so forth. I AM SCARED TO DEATH I WONT GET BETTER. I pray, everyone prays for me, and I am thankful. But I dont want to let anyone down, and burden them. I don't want to feel the way I do. I need coping skills, which I will be learning. I kind of change moods throughout the day, but it's more like I put myself in those moods because of pessismistic views and so forth then i dwell on it (ocd) and it just plain sucks. IS THERE HOPE? I want to move out of my parents house, start a life with my boyfriend when he's free, and live on my own and get a job. (im on ssi) I just don't function though right now. I'm constantly tired, don't want to shower, go places because I have awful social anxiety and self esteem issues, clean, anything. HOW DO I KNOW IF IM TRULY BIPOLAR? I just don't get it. Any input would really help - thanks...

 
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Old 05-01-2009, 02:20 AM   #2
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

I'm not a pdoc (psychiatrist), but it sounds like you have major depressive disorder rather than bipolar.

I'm not so sure I agree with the diagnosis of bipolar either given the fact that you experienced mania due to medication.

The DSM specifically states that if mania is induced by meds like anti-depressants (or illegal drugs), this does not warrant a diagnosis of bipolar.

However, they are thinking about adding another category to bipolar which would describe those who have experienced a manic episode as a result of taking anti-depressants.

If I were you, I'd ask for a second opinion. See another pdoc and tell them about the symptoms you've described.

Like I said, I'm not a pdoc, but it sounds to me as if you have major depressive disorder (unipolar depression).

By the way, one does not have to experience full blown mania to be diagnosed with bipolar.

Cyclothymia is a mild form of bipolar which causes hypomania (mild mania) and mild depression.

Bipolar II (also referred to as "soft bipolar") is characterized by hypomania and severe depression.

Bipolar I is the most severe form of the disorder which causes full blown mania, hypomania and severe depression.
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

Last edited by dreams in neon; 05-01-2009 at 02:26 AM.

 
Old 05-01-2009, 10:31 AM   #3
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

You might be thinking of manic in the traditional way-meaning having energy and good feelings or even just functioning differently. However, the other type of mania, I have been told, is seen in Bipolar II which can be anger or irritability. I could almost have written a lot of what you wrote. I have been diagnosed with Bipolar II. The only mania I have experienced is IRRITABILITY. Unfortunately, it has been depression, and irritability--not a mania in that I have a good day, lots of energy and get things done.
Also, Bipolar II shares traits with PTSD symptoms which I also have had--and also shares traits with Borderline Personality Disorder.

So, it can be very confusing and depending on which dr. I see and what I feel like, I may or may not have been diagnosed with one or the other or none.

Hang in there. It might take awhile to find the light at the end of the tunnel-but with proper treatment and counseling-you will.

I was and continue to fight suicidal feelings and so I do understand. I remember in those moments that "tomorrow is another day".......

Stay close to the boards,
Julie

 
Old 05-01-2009, 01:01 PM   #4
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

Irritability along with mania is also seen in Bipolar I.

Whenever I'm towards the middle of a manic episode I become extremely irritable.

Irritability can also be experienced during a depressive episode.

If I'm struggling with severe depression or am psychotic, I can feel extremely agitated as well.
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

 
Old 05-05-2009, 09:10 PM   #5
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

i was diagnosed with the same thing as you for 4 years following 5 years of just mild depression. Then it went to mania and bipolar anxiety etc. this past year my depakote and lamictal all stopped working for me, everything was failing me, i was on suicide watch. Then instead of taking a chemical treatment route i tried a new treatment thats called biofeedback or neurofeedback. Its just a painless brainwave stimulation treatment that now ive had 15 sessions and im happy to say im off most of my medication and i feel the most amazing i ever have in my life. I wish this treatment was more well known. It could save lives. Ive been depression and anxiety free since feb. Look it up. Neurofeedback or biofeedback its refered to both. it also is known to help and cure siezures, ADD, ADHD, and in my case completely took away my bipolar. a miracle? i dont want to jinx it but in a way it is. i recommend anyone suffering with bipolar dpression and wanting to get off medication to atleast look into it. wont hurt. good luck

 
Old 05-05-2009, 09:29 PM   #6
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by klight317 View Post
i was diagnosed with the same thing as you for 4 years following 5 years of just mild depression. Then it went to mania and bipolar anxiety etc. this past year my depakote and lamictal all stopped working for me, everything was failing me, i was on suicide watch. Then instead of taking a chemical treatment route i tried a new treatment thats called biofeedback or neurofeedback. Its just a painless brainwave stimulation treatment that now ive had 15 sessions and im happy to say im off most of my medication and i feel the most amazing i ever have in my life. I wish this treatment was more well known. It could save lives. Ive been depression and anxiety free since feb. Look it up. Neurofeedback or biofeedback its refered to both. it also is known to help and cure siezures, ADD, ADHD, and in my case completely took away my bipolar. a miracle? i dont want to jinx it but in a way it is. i recommend anyone suffering with bipolar dpression and wanting to get off medication to atleast look into it. wont hurt. good luck
I have my doubts about biofeedback being able to "cure" bipolar. A person may not be symptomatic following biofeedback, but that doesn't mean this will always be the case. Bipolar is a chemical imbalance that requires meds in order to keep it under control.

I've been showing clear signs of bipolar since age 20. It wasn't until my symptoms became severe that I ended up having my first manic/psychotic episode. According to the attending pdoc who treated me when I was IP, this was due to being unmedicated as well as several other factors.

I don't advise anyone to stop taking their meds. If bipolar is left untreated, it can lead to progressively worse manic episodes as one ages.

The best treatment protocol for bipolar is a combination of meds and therapy. Research has proven this time and time again.
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

Last edited by dreams in neon; 05-05-2009 at 09:34 PM.

 
Old 05-05-2009, 09:49 PM   #7
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

i see what your saying. I am just saying what worked for me. My meds worked for years until i had no other place to turn. My dr. was given me new meds to try left and right but the suicidal thoughts got worse and i had no other choice. the biofeedback saved my life. I havent had any symptoms whatsoever since my first 4 treatments. The brain can have a chemical imbalance,yes this is true, but the brain can also be trained to heal and correct itself. i dont advise anyone stop there meds. there are lots of people out there that dont need to be on meds if an alternative can possibly help. in my case im thankful to say my body has been less polluted with medication.

 
Old 05-05-2009, 10:13 PM   #8
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by klight317 View Post
i see what your saying. I am just saying what worked for me. My meds worked for years until i had no other place to turn. My dr. was given me new meds to try left and right but the suicidal thoughts got worse and i had no other choice. the biofeedback saved my life. I havent had any symptoms whatsoever since my first 4 treatments. The brain can have a chemical imbalance,yes this is true, but the brain can also be trained to heal and correct itself. i dont advise anyone stop there meds. there are lots of people out there that dont need to be on meds if an alternative can possibly help. in my case im thankful to say my body has been less polluted with medication.
I know someone who tried over 20 different meds to treat her bipolar. The 21st med turned out to be the charm. Even then, she experienced bothersome side effects for a year until they gradually improved.

How exactly does biofeedback work? How does it improve one's depression or bipolar?
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

 
Old 05-06-2009, 12:58 PM   #9
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

You can read about it in great detail by just typing it in a search engine. Its been a successful technique for 25 years now. works byy stabilizing the brain, neurofeedback acts as a natural anticonvulsant." The rationale for using neurofeedback therapeutically is that it corrects deficits in brain cerebral regulatory function related to arousal, attention, vigilance and affect. For most bipolar people, reducing the use of medications is important due to the unpleasant side effects and lack of feeling like themselves which is why i feel actually normal cuz im off most of my meds. i didnt just go off them, i had to be monitored of course and gradually weened off them. As biofeedback training builds stability, medications can be reduced. Most MD's are willing to reduce medications as they observe increased stability in their patients. As stability becomes the dominant pattern in the brain most clients can begin to reduce the amount of neurofeedback training

 
Old 05-06-2009, 01:52 PM   #10
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

Suggesting that someone with bipolar reduce their meds can be life threatening and cause more harm than good. If a pdoc prescribes a certain regimen, he or she has a reason for doing so.

Neurofeedback has been successful in treating unipolar depression, but not bipolar depression. It has also been proven to help ADHD.

However, there are no studies which support the fact that it is effective in treating bipolar. All of the information I've read suggest that it has the potential to treat bipolar, but keep in mind that "potential" does not equal a "cure."
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

 
Old 05-06-2009, 02:06 PM   #11
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dreams in neon View Post
Suggesting that someone with bipolar reduce their meds can be life threatening and cause more harm than good. If a pdoc prescribes a certain regimen, he or she has a reason for doing so.

Neurofeedback has been successful in treating unipolar depression, but not bipolar depression. It has also been proven to help ADHD.

However, there are no studies which support the fact that it is effective in treating bipolar. All of the information I've read suggest that it has the potential to treat bipolar, but keep in mind that "potential" does not equal a "cure."
i already retracted my statement that its a "cure" thats my mistake. However that doesnt dismiss that i had bipolar for years, and now i dont since starting the treatment. I dont see a problem trying it like i did. If it dont work it wont hurt anything at all, u just stay on your meds the whole time. When u start feeling relief is when you discuss with the dr's of decrerasing them. Hey, it worked for me and many others with bipolar. Im sorry you feel the way you do about it, Since you have tried it and all.

 
Old 05-06-2009, 02:14 PM   #12
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by klight317 View Post
i already retracted my statement that its a "cure" thats my mistake. However that doesnt dismiss that i had bipolar for years, and now i dont since starting the treatment. I dont see a problem trying it like i did. If it dont work it wont hurt anything at all, u just stay on your meds the whole time. When u start feeling relief is when you discuss with the dr's of decrerasing them. Hey, it worked for me and many others with bipolar. Im sorry you feel the way you do about it, Since you have tried it and all.
Once you're diagnosed (accurately) with bipolar, you're always bipolar and neurofeedback won't change that.

There is no reason to feel sorry for me. I'm being realistic about neurofeedback and its' application to bipolar.

You may not have used the term "cure," but your post implies that based on your statement about no longer having bipolar.

Even if you only have one manic episode in your life, you're still bipolar.

Even if you have neurofeedback and are not actively experiencing symptoms (for now), you still have bipolar.

Come back to this board in another 3-5 years and tell me if you're still free of symptoms. If you are, I'll be more inclined to believe what you say is true.

Until then, I'm not convinced.
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

Last edited by dreams in neon; 05-06-2009 at 02:16 PM.

 
Old 05-06-2009, 02:26 PM   #13
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dreams in neon View Post
Once you're diagnosed (accurately) with bipolar, you're always bipolar and neurofeedback won't change that.

There is no reason to feel sorry for me. I'm being realistic about neurofeedback and its' application to bipolar.

You may not have used the term "cure," but your post implies that based on your statement about no longer having bipolar.

Even if you only have one manic episode in your life, you're still bipolar.

Even if you have neurofeedback and are not actively experiencing symptoms (for now), you still have bipolar.

Come back to this board in another 3-5 years and tell me if you're still free of symptoms. If you are, I'll be more inclined to believe what you say is true.

Until then, I'm not convinced.
fair enough. I wish you all the best. I really do, as i know the pain in having to live in such a living hell. Like i said though, even if i still am bipolar. And its not showing symptoms for now, atleast i can say that since november 2008 when i started my first treatment after my 4th treatment a started to lose the symptoms, now i dont have any, and "for now" if i live with nearly no medication, not all, (i still take 250mg of depakote and 300mg of wellbutrin XL).....if im living better, then it was all worth it, when i used to go 1 day missing a dose of meds and be in bed the whole day in menatl pain.

 
Old 05-06-2009, 03:14 PM   #14
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by klight317 View Post
fair enough. I wish you all the best. I really do, as i know the pain in having to live in such a living hell. Like i said though, even if i still am bipolar. And its not showing symptoms for now, atleast i can say that since november 2008 when i started my first treatment after my 4th treatment a started to lose the symptoms, now i dont have any, and "for now" if i live with nearly no medication, not all, (i still take 250mg of depakote and 300mg of wellbutrin XL).....if im living better, then it was all worth it, when i used to go 1 day missing a dose of meds and be in bed the whole day in menatl pain.
Since you're also taking Depakote and Wellbutrin, I'm sure they are also responsible for the fact that you are not showing any symptoms at this time. I'm sure that if you were to stop those meds, you would be symptomatic.
__________________
Atypical Bipolar I Disorder with Rapid Cycling
Meds:
Depakote 1500mg
Prozac 40mg
Risperdal 1mg titrating to 6mg/day
Klonopin .5mg (2x/day)
Trazodone 100mg or 200mg PRN

 
Old 05-06-2009, 03:37 PM   #15
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Re: bipolar..not bipolar.. bipolar....what to do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dreams in neon View Post
Since you're also taking Depakote and Wellbutrin, I'm sure they are also responsible for the fact that you are not showing any symptoms at this time. I'm sure that if you were to stop those meds, you would be symptomatic.
well im not at that stage yet. The weening off my meds goes by every 3 to 4 months. i still have to cut a few more times. Even if i hafta stay on what i am, its better than what i had

 
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