Mood Disorders Expert Forum
Concerned about Bipolar
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Welcome to the Mood Disorders Forum. Questions in this forum are being answered by Peter Forster, MD and topics covered are anxiety, bipolar, depression, panic disorder, post traumatic stress disorder and stress.

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Concerned about Bipolar

Hi, thank you for taking the time to answer my query. I am a 28 year old male. Recently i have been feeling very stressed and anxious at the thought that i might have Bipolar disorder.I have no family history of Bipolar disorder. I sometimes find that i worry a lot about certain matters but i have recently started to worry a lot about Bipolar. I have done several online tests that have come back negative. I have also visited my GP who ruled it down to Anxiety. The reason im still worried is that he did not seem to ask many questions. I am not usually a depressed person and dont have mood swings different to anyone else as far as im aware. If i am feeling anxious about something i find that i get a lot of the symptoms associated with depression but these symptoms usually lift if the thing i was worrying about turns out to be nothing. I have never had a manic phase and as far as im aware i have never been hypomanic. My mood seems to be fairly stable but i can get myself very worked up if im anxious to the point where i feel as though im going crazy. The reason i worry is that i have read somewhere that Anxiety can be linked to Bipolar and i cant seem to stop researching symptoms online which seems to make the feelings worse. Are you able to clarify if there is anything that i have noted that may indicate to you anything in the Bipolar spectrum? Thank you for your help
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Thanks for your email.

From your message I would say that there is no reason to think you have bipolar. It is true that bipolar often is associated with anxiety, but of more relevance is the fact that only a small percentage of people with anxiety have bipolar.

The trouble with self diagnosis is that it is not really possible to analyze oneself objectively.

This is something I know about from personal experience. When I was a medical student I had what is known as "medical student syndrome" - listening to all the stories about illness led me to begin to wonder if I might not have a serious illness... and that led to a series of worries and midnights on the internet... you get the picture... it was really a terrible time and I sympathize with your anxiety.

If my answer is not able to address your worry adequately, you might want to consider going to see a specialist... For me I was only able to stop worrying after seeing a very thoughtful internal medicine doctor, who asked all the questions, did a thorough assessment, and then advised me that he was sure I did not have any of the conditions that I was worrying about.

In your case that would involve a visit to a psychiatrist. One who takes the time to listen to your story and concerns and give you his or her honest opinion.
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