Bipolar disorder should never be taken lightly, but this is especially true for young people, because it can be even more intense for them than it is for adults. There are several reasons that teenagers can develop bipolar disorder, but it is especially important for parents to be able to recognize the symptoms. Bipolar disorder is most definitively characterized by sudden and extreme upswings and downswings of emotion that interfere with regular life. It can be somewhat difficult for teens to be able to see the problem in themselves, so here are some signs that you should be aware of if you believe your son or daughter might have bipolar disorder.
Signs Parents Need To Watch For
1 - Episodes of depression – A significant part of having bipolar disorder includes swings of emotions. Depression is a part of this, so if your child regularly starts acting sad and it’s a sudden transition, this could indicate bipolar disorder.
2 - Episodes of mania – Having manic episodes can entail a few things. It usually means a very elevated mood with incredibly high levels of energy. These behaviors go beyond what could be considered normal, and often come shortly after the periods of depression.
3 - Having a very short temper – Getting angry very quickly is a characteristic that very commonly indicates a mood disorder. Irritability usually accompanies the very intense manic episodes.
4 - Alcohol or drug use – To cope with the sudden changes in emotion, a large amount of people suffering from this disorder use drugs or alcohol. If you find that your child is abusing substances and it is grouped with some of the other symptoms, this can indicate that the disorder is getting more serious and that they are dealing with it in a dangerous way.
Bipolar disorder can be especially damaging for teenagers because it can interfere with their school work, home life, relationships, and development in many other areas. If you begin to notice any of these symptoms in your teen, it might be time to seek professional help to make sure that your child doesn’t face any of the many negative consequences of untreated bipolar disorder.