Bipolar Disorder Community
Am I Bipolar (ext)
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Bipolar Disorder is also known as "Manic Depressive Disorder". This forum is for questions and support for people with, or for loved ones of people with Bipolar Disorder. The forum covers topics ranging from Aggressive Behavior, Affect on friends and Family, Alcohol and Drug Abuse, Appetite Changes, Chronic Pain, Denial, Depression, Difficulty Concentrating, Euphoria, Guilt, Manic Depression, Medications, Mood Swings, Poor Judgment, and Sleep Disorders

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Am I Bipolar (ext)

The thing is before falling ill I was the type of person very quiet and non-hostile. How come I developed mania. Was I bipolar by birth without knowing?. Did I take wrong meds for 4 years after the accident to confront the phobia, fear, stray thoughts, etc... then all of a sudden I became bipolar because I stopped the risperidone. Again trauma (accident) may trigger phobia, fear, etc... this is OK I suppose but I can't imagine bipolarity. So what happened exactly? Recently, before I had my 2nd mania I felt there are fluctuations of energy. While at work I felt sleepy with no energy at all, and at times I felt restless can't sit on my chair and had to move around. I was in a bookshop the other day and started to feel high, I thought the mania will attack, so I ran home for 2 kms and holding an encyclopedia of 5 lb which I bought, whereas I was never an athlete. So how come this high energy got into me? I also am distracted, cannot focus on one issue, cannot take a decision or else take a decision then change quickly i.e. I have an inability to take a decision. Few thoughts, some distorted, keep going through my mind over and over. I lack good concentration. I feel easily overwhelmed. I am irritable, frustrated and have low tolerance.
Finally, It is said that some anti-depressants (especially the tricyclic like anafranil) can actually cause a manic or a depressive episode, which happened to be my antidepressant for 5 uninterrupted years. So could it be that the anafranil I constantly used (not now) has added to my 2nd mania? Because my 1st mania arrived when I stopped the risperidone and lived for 3 months on anafranil only. My 2nd mania arrived when my mother augmented the dose to alleviate the stress of work. So could it be the reason and it's not bipolarity?.
If I have to take mood stabilizers, I see on the web people take antipsychotics like seroquel, abilify, … Others take lithium while others take anti-convulsents only: tegretol, depakote, lamictal. Some mix between Lamictal and abilify. I know it's the pdoc who decides. But they say for instance lamictal you don't have to liver check regularly, yet Lamictal could be suitable for depressed and not hypomanic. But how come lamictal substitute lithium. I know from the internet a person stabilized 25 years on litium but having renal failure switched to tegretol. So what is the "best" mood stabilizer.
If it is bipolarity. Is it a very bleak situation?. Can one survive it with the least damage. Is there any scientific breakthrough in this field?.
Many thanks and am extremely grateful
Adel Ezz
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Find the best doctor you can and take their advice. I think you can be bipolar with one mania, or some people do not have any mania and their depression responds better if treated as bipolar.  You need good advice from the best Doctor you can find.  Best of luck.  

Many people do really well on the right medication, I am sure you can too.  I try to be healthy in every other way, exercise diet etc, because I have to take these meds.  that is all we can do.  You can have regular health checks and make sure everything is OK over the years.
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337492_tn?1212462436
Bless your heart, you sound just like me when I was first diagnosed.  It can come on all of the sudden.  My manic attacks were more hypomania for several years and I did not know what it was.  It was just those times when I was more productive between being depressed, which I was diagnosed with first.  Then my MAJOR manic attack hit and lasted four months.  It was horrible.  I bairly slept and was out of control with everything in my life.  I had to quit my job too.  Yes, anti-depressents can cause mania if not taken with a mood stabilizer.  The normal combo for most bipolars is using both.  For instance I used Lithium/Wellbutrin but the Lithium started causing me problems with my blood pressure and weight gain.  Now I am on Abilify/Wellbutrin and I love it.  It works much better than the Lithium did.  Mania comes on suddenly after a bipolar person has been diagnosed with depression, more times than not.  My mania was due to stress.  I was working almost full time and attending college full time.  It was too much for me to handle and I had no down time.  Therefore, the racing thoughts was the first thing to happen and my brain buzzed 24/7.  Then I got all the other symptoms and thought I should see a psychiatrist to find out what was going on.  I was put through the testing and bam...got the proper diagnosis.  Hope this helps you to understand more, Good luck and keep us posted.  This is a great forum and welcome aboard! Kristen
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Hi Kristen

Thank you for your mail

You said something important "I was put through the testing and bam...got the proper diagnosis". Can you remember what was this test about?
Ezz
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You know I believe it makes little difference of your actual diagnosis, your in the bipolar world and need to be treated with mood stabilizers. They are also used for the other disorders you mentioned.
I would focus on finding the right meds for your symptoms and learn about controlling bipolar in general. It makes little difference what type you have, the meds are all the same.  
Try adding Fish Oils to your diet, around 2500mg. a day, it helps with mood and depression.
Another must is therapy, we can control BP with meds but therapy helps with the ongoing problems we have to deal with.
Don't worry about the Lithium, it's a gold standard. If you are put on it your doc will have regular blood tests done to make sure it's not causing you any harm. As far as the other drugs go, there are people who have been on them for 20+ years. It's what we need to stay alive. Just like a diabetic needs insulin. That's how you have to look at bipolar, it never goes away and can only be treated with proper medication.
Just be sure to tell your doc if you feel a med isn't helping, there is always something else that will.
Hang in there, most of us have been on the same roller coaster ride as you looking for an answer to what our problem was. It always comes later than we would like, in my case it took 20 years to get the right diagnosis. That's 20 years on the wrong meds. I know how frustraing it can be, just educate yourself on the meds used for bipolar so you can ask appropriate questions when needed.
Again, best of luck!
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337492_tn?1212462436
The tests I took checked my mood flucuations.  Like it asked me to rate how I feel about certain things.  The other one checked how many symptoms I displayed of Bipolar disorder based on my answers.  It took them around two weeks to evaluate my tests and talking with me b/f giving me a diagnosis.
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WOW!  I took the online self test that you can take to your doctor to see if you are bipolar I believe I very well could be.  It is werid how well the sympoms fit my life.  I am doing a mood chart, actual several, because I feel the need to, even though they are very similar and I am having my hubby fill one out based on what he thinks my moods are on a day to day basis.  i will have about 17 days worth of info before seeing our therapist for the second time.  I just don't know what to think or do...so here I am in different forums and sites trying to learn what i can.  i kinda become very focused on it.  although I junp up from here and pack, we are moving, and then play with the kids, then talk to my hubby, then just sit for a moment and go on to something else or start the cycle back over again.  
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337492_tn?1212462436
Good for you in educating yourself.  That is the best, I did the same.  I know just about everything there is to know about being bipolar because my nose has been to the grind to learn as much as I can, you are on the right track!  Way to go!
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