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Bipolar? - March 25th 2013, 03:10 AM

Does anyone know if you can be bipolar but still need the same amount of sleep? I looked up the symptoms and I have a lot of them, except for a decreased need for sleep during a hypomanic episode. Could this still be bipolar disorder?
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Re: Bipolar? - March 25th 2013, 03:40 AM

It does take me up to like three hours to fall asleep, then I wake up every few hours. I also have very weird dreams, but I don't know if that has anything to do with this
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Re: Bipolar? - March 25th 2013, 07:58 PM

Well, Mania and Hypomania symptoms ARE needed for a diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder, and your mood irregulations (and even some sleep issues) are better explained by your age. You're 15, your hormones are still swinging around, and it doesn't sound like you have any sleep disturbances that could be associated with Bipolar Disorder.

I suggest seeing a counselor nonetheless.

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Re: Bipolar? - March 25th 2013, 08:29 PM

I highly doubt you're bipolar, especially due to your age. It's an extremely rare disorder.
I'd say because you're very young it's probably just hormones.

sooner or later though, you always have to w a k e u p

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Re: Bipolar? - March 25th 2013, 09:18 PM

No one here can diagnose you. This is the danger of self-diagnosis, I'm learning how to do it at the graduate level and the first thing we tell people is please don't Google your symptoms because you will scare yourself and it can convince you that you have almost anything. The self-evaluation tools/quizzes are just as bad. Even the criteria in the book we use are vague which is why you need training to diagnose out of it. If you think you're bipolar, or have any disorder for that matter, a consultation with a mental health professional is the best thing you can do. Just because you're 15 doesn't mean that it isn't possible, but we can't say either way. I would also direct you to THIS ARTICLE

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Re: Bipolar? - March 27th 2013, 03:10 AM

Yeah it's probably because I googled my symptoms. I scare myself into believing I have something, even if I don't. Thanks for answering me.��
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Re: Bipolar? - March 27th 2013, 08:13 AM

I agree with the others. Since you're 15 then it could definitely be hormones. Although your moods is something I'd talk to someone about. You shouldn't go through sadness alone.

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Re: Bipolar? - March 27th 2013, 08:28 AM

I have bipolar, and I can tell you this:

my experiences are far more extreme than what if found on google and in quizzes you may do online.

As far as I know, the majority of people who experience bipolar disorder (and I've met a few), have extreme experiences, ranging from weeks and weeks of not leaving the house or eating or showering, to weeks where the rest of the world feels like it's playing at half speed. It's scary and uncomfortable. Maybe there are times when being hypomanic creates an increase in productivity, but mostly, bipolar is a tough ride.

Like Kate said, diagnostic criteria are incredibly vague. There are also a lot of things to take into account - age, physical health, genetic predisposition, and environmental factors. All of those affect any diagnosis.

Anyway if your sleep is crappy and you're feeling sad a lot, maybe look at how much stress you have at the moment, and also address things like routine and proper bed times. It's important to have routines around sleep. At 15, you should ideally be going to bed around 10:30pm for a 6:30am wake-up - that gives you 8 hours. You may find you need more than that, but it's unlikely that you would need less. Going to bed at getting up at the same time each day is important, as is sleeping in a dark, quiet room.

If you are feeling overwhelmed and that's preventing you falling asleep, talk through with someone how you could manage it. If there's too much school work or too many commitments you may need to look at organising your time differently or perhaps dropping one or two things.

And if it's really concerning you, and preventing you from functioning normally, then talk to an adult, preferably a counselor, parent, or GP, but realistically any adult will do.

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