Bipolar disorder is much more common than the healthcare community has realized. Bipolar disorder is grossly misunderstood and misdiagnosed.
When you read in the paper or hear in the news that someone, who has been known as a fairly normal person, suddenly – and without reason – went off the deep end and committed some bizarre act of crime, committed suicide or did some other irrational act, Bipolar I is generally at the root of their behavior.
People who have Bipolar DisorderI are likely to think irrationally and act impulsively, i.e., frequently gambling for high stakes ad shopping sprees in which they purchase items on credit they can’t afford. Many of them are risk-takers, engaging in extreme sports or driving dangerously on public streets.
During the stage of Bipolar I, the erratic behavior of the patient sometimes resembles schizophrenia. In other words, the person suffers a serious break with reality.
Unfortunately, the news making behavior of certain high profile crimes committed by people with this stain of bipolarity has caused some observers to ridicule or trivialize the reality of this condition, the magnitude of its impact on a human life, and the desperate need we have to help these people for their sakes and ours.
Bipolarity can be personally devastating and potentially life threatening. Even for those who quietly and stoically suffer its symptoms should not be forced to live their lives in this manner. If you suspect that you or someone you love may be suffering from bipolar disorder, please know that there are all sorts of ways I can help. Imagine living your life fully and completely with this disorder under control.