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Bipolar Disorder Assessment

Bi-polar-bear with Assess-man
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The exact cause of bipolar disorder has yet to be determined, and most theories implicate a combination of neurotransmitter dysregulation and genetic factors. For example, it is believed that there is excess cholinergic transmission during depressive phases, which decreases during mania. Mania may also be associated with excess dopamine and serotonin transmission. Genetic predisposition also likely contributes to the development of bipolar disorder, with multiple different genes currently being investigated.
9 KEY FACTS
MECHANISM
Neurotransmitter Dysregulation and Genetic Factors
Dysregulated Neurotransmitters with DNA-double-helix on Jeans

The exact cause of bipolar disorder has yet to be determined, and most theories implicate a combination of neurotransmitter dysregulation and genetic factors. For example, it is believed that there is excess cholinergic transmission during depressive phases, which decreases during mania. Mania may also be associated with excess dopamine and serotonin transmission. Genetic predisposition also likely contributes to the development of bipolar disorder, with multiple different genes currently being investigated.

MANIA SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
Euphoric Mood
U-flowers

When patients are manic, there is euphoria and elation. This person appears to be on a continuous "high." With this said, the patient's mood is always subject to frequent variation.

Nonstop Physical Activity
Running around the Clock

In the manic phase, patients have excessive psychomotor activity. They have poor impulse control and their energy seems inexhaustible. They have a diminished need for sleep and may seem very extroverted.

Flight of Ideas
Flight of Idea Lightbulbs

They have a heightened sense of perception and cognition, but these patients are easily distracted. Thinking is flighty, with a rapid flow of ideas and disjointed logic.

Rapid Speech
Rapid Speech-bubbles

Speech may be rapid, and can be displayed as a continuous flow of accelerated speech. The sentence structure may be disorganized and incoherent, and speech can seem pressured.

DEPRESSION SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
Mood Changes
Moody-mask Rings Changing

Patients have mood swings, going from episodes of mania to depression. With depressive episodes, feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness and despair can arise. Often, their mood and functioning usually returns to normal between episodes of mania and depression.

Sad Affect
Sad Face

Just like they can develop mania, patients can also develop depressive episodes. Patients display sadness, crying, and a sense of worthlessness.

Psychomotor Retardation
Brain-motor and Read-tarred book

Furthermore, patients in the depressive phase of bipolar disorder have physical symptoms. They show psychomotor retardation that is manifested as loss of energy, slow movements, and sleep problems.

Suicidal Thoughts
Suicidal-jumper Thoughts

This depressive phase of bipolar disorder can lead to suicidal thoughts in patients. Caregivers should be attentive to bipolar patients experiencing suicidal thoughts during a depressive stage.

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