Bipolar Disorders by Hal Marcovitz

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By Hal Marcovitz

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31 Bipolar Disorders “ When I was manic, I was drinking, spending excessively, out of control. I entered into nightmare relationships. I was looking for the next extreme thing to do. One day, I left my job and felt that I had a new purpose in life: to drive as fast as I possibly could somewhere. ” —Marya Hornbacher, quoted in Michelle Tan and Michelle Taubr, “Britney in Crisis,” People, September 21, 2008. Hornbacher, a bipolar patient, is the author of the memoir Madness: A Bipolar Life. “ Bipolar disorder is challenging to diagnose because individuals can cover up the symptoms of the illness or may recognize only their depression, not the manic phase of the disorder.

I’m clearly drugged. I have no idea what day it is, or even what season of the year.  . I crawl out of bed, unsteady on my legs. I make my way down the hallway, holding on to the wall. 39 Eventually, most bipolar patients do report their side effects to their doctors, who can help them overcome the nausea, headaches, and other symptoms by altering their doses. Also, many bipolar patients do come to realize that if they go off their medication, their mood swings will return. ”40 Risky Behavior A lot of what goes wrong in a bipolar person’s life occurs during the manic phase of the illness—a time when the patient feels he or she can do no wrong.

Com. Galynker is director of the Family Center for Bipolar Disorder at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City. * Editor’s Note: While the definition of a primary source can be narrowly or broadly defined, for the purposes of Compact Research, a primary source consists of: 1) results of original research presented by an organization or researcher; 2) eyewitness accounts of events, personal experience, or work experience; 3) first-person editorials offering pundits’ opinions; 4) government officials presenting political plans and/or policies; 5) representatives of organizations presenting testimony or policy.

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