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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
Gidig Offline
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Rapid Changing Moods - January 10th 2013, 08:10 PM

Hey everyone!

Overall, I have been much better emotionally than I was before. I've had some difficulties the past few months but I believe it's a combination of Peter's passing and the weather change.

I do not feel like it is something I need to change medication over or anything like that. But I really will be happy and content one day, even for a few hours, and then it is like a switch. I am diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder, so it makes sense. But today, I am in a really good mood. Not manic, I just haven't felt so 'normal' in a while. My day has gone well, I've gotten quite a bit accomplished so far and all that. But I get these moments of pure... almost dread? I start thinking like, "What do I have to be so happy about?" or "This isn't going to last." It's probably one of the worst and most intense feelings I've ever had. It lasts sometimes a few seconds to 2 or 3 minutes. How can I keep myself from dipping into these moods? They're over before I realize they're there usually. It's just odd. Any input appreciated!

Edit: Actually, after thinking about it for a moment, does this sound more like periods of intense anxiety? There is a bit of a physical reaction, nothing extreme, but my chest tightens a bit.

Thanks!
Maria.



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Re: Rapid Changing Moods - January 12th 2013, 09:57 AM

If you don't mind me asking, what kind of medication are you on, and what type of Bipolar were you diagnosed with? (Trust me, it's relevant to whether I can give some insight or not).


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Re: Rapid Changing Moods - January 12th 2013, 10:33 AM

Often for me, feeling mostly normal but having thoughts that dip all over the place is a warning sign that I'll be either manic or depressed soon. Also, for me, anxiety is closely related to periods of elevated of depressed mood - I'm chilled about nearly everything when I have no mood disorder symptoms, but really anxious when I start to experience them.

I would keep an eye on your mood - like rate how you feel overall each day and so forth - over the next week or so (keep a mood diary or something) to make sure you're not experiencing any other early warning signs. If it turns out you are, then contact your doctor, because it's possible to have "break through" episodes that occur even when you're on medication that normally works for you.

My doctor says I "cycle quite rapidly", but I found out that for them, rapid cycling is more than four episodes in a year. So yup.

If you also have anxiety, separate of your bipolar, then possibly it's the anxiety talking, I think you make a valid point there. And it's normal, when you hit "normal", to feel like maybe it won't last, or to get a paranoid that you might be experiencing symptoms. Heh, life. Good luck with getting a handle on that anyway.
   
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Re: Rapid Changing Moods - January 12th 2013, 01:59 PM

Thank you for your responses. =)

I'm on the mood stabilizer Lamictal, and have technically been diagnosed with Bipolar NOS. I show signs from like all types, but normally lean towards depression instead of mania. My psychiatrist had said that without taking an anti-depressant and the type of symptoms Lamictal is supposed to help, that if I became depressed we could add a low dose of Seroquel. With my experience and research, this is not an option I would like to take unless necessary. But anti-depressants for me cause hallucinations, more mania than I normally experience and EXTREME rapid cycling moods.

That is interesting that you experience similar moods before an 'episode'. I do not have much experience in actually feeling something before it comes on, and it tends to be gradual when moving towards depression. Though honestly I have only been on this exact medication/dosage for 8 months or so, so maybe that is changing how my moods cycle.

I seem to always try to keep some record of my moods, but only stick with it when I'm 'normal' or manic! :P If you have any ideas on consistency and perhaps what I should record in a journal of some sort, they would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks again to both of you!
Maria.



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Re: Rapid Changing Moods - January 13th 2013, 12:36 AM

I got given something called "diary cards" last year, as my psychologist had an issue with the fact that if I don't get asked about something I don't want to talk about, I won't say anything. They're often used for DBT, and you rate things on a scale of 1 - 10 each day. The options on my diary card were:

Urge to: Suicide, Self-Harm, Quit therapy (incl. medication)
Emotions: Sad, Flat, Elevated, Frustrated, Confused, Anger, Joy/Happy, Anxiety, Shame.
Those were all on a 0 - 10 scale, 0 being "I didn't feel it at all", 10 being all the time, or "I definitely want to do this".

These ones were Yes/No responses -
Alcohol, Prescribed Meds, Recreational drugs, Eating 3x a day, Sticking to routine
And then my actual behaviour - also Y/N
Self-Harm, Risky behaviour, "Open Doors".

All of these were relevant to mood symptoms I experience, for example, frustration, confusion, anger, and elevation are all feelings associated with mania/hypomania for me, and being flat, angry, anxious and feeling guilty/shamed are depression things.
Then, because I'm impulsive, we had to figure out what counts as risky, because my urge to do risky things increases monumentally when I'm really high or low. "Open Doors" simply means you have things available to do things if you want, for example, you may not be taking drugs, but have some in your possession, ditto blades and so forth.

The Diary Card was a piece of A4 paper with the options going across the top, and the days of the week going down vertically, so each card was a week.

I've been on quetiapine for a while (generic name for seroquel) and aside from lithium, it's been one of the best medications I've been on. It doesn't stop me experiencing mood symptoms - for example, in September, I got hypomanic, decided to stop taking it as a result, and had a month of full-blown mania, ultimately resulting in me being put in respite and starting to take it again - they won't give me lithium for reasons so yeah.

Aside from when I was doing the diary cards, the only thing that mildly tracks my moods these days is that I blog on this site most days, and if I feel like I might be experiencing mood symptoms I list them, so that if needed later, I can go back and check when it started blah blah blah.

Anywho, have fun with that!
   
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