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Bipolar II Screening - January 17th 2021, 09:16 PM

Hi all,

I was talking to my medication prescriber about other possible diagnoses and she said that it is possible I have Bipolar II and that she will do a screening with me at my next appointment in February. What types of things were you asked on your screening? How did it go?

I looked a few screeners online and it asked if you've done things people would consider risky/foolish. What type of things would that entail? Would self harm count? Would things from a few years ago that stand out in my mind count? With Covid, I can't say I've done much this past year. Can't do a lot of foolish things when you're stuck in your house, LOL.

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Re: Bipolar II Screening - January 17th 2021, 10:02 PM

Things from the past count. Self harm can be seen as risky.

I have bipolar two and I believe a lot of the screening questions are similar to Bipolar 1. The difference between the two is that with Bipolar 1 the mania is a bigger feature and with bipolar 2 the depression is a bigger feature. That's why a lot of people with Bipolar 2 get misdiagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder.

You can also ask your doctor if you can count past events due to covid. I would assume that she'd agree that would be okay.


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Re: Bipolar II Screening - January 18th 2021, 12:41 AM

What questions were you asked?


   
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Re: Bipolar II Screening - January 20th 2021, 08:04 PM

I don't have bipolar and (or I've never been screened for it anyway). From my reading on bipolar moods and symptoms it seems to be that risky/foolish behaviour tends to be things out of character and could include: spending large amounts of money (particularly if you can't afford it), engaging in risky sex, consuming large amounts of alcohol or drugs etc. It tends to be things that you wouldn't normally do and may involve a lot of regret, shame or other difficulties once the mania has gone. But as Jenna said, bipolar II tends to involve less of the things associated with mania.


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Re: Bipolar II Screening - January 21st 2021, 11:03 AM

0i was diagnosed around 2007 or 2008. I had another screening in 2009 or 2010 when I started seeing a new therapist.

Alot of the question relate to asking about mania... Do you ever feel euphoric... Go a few days without sleeping... High risk behavior etc. I don't remember everything because It was so long ago.

I do know that bipolar II is misdiagnosed all the time. They originally diagnosed me with Major Depressive Disorder until my dad explained her had Bipokr II and I was exhibiting a lot of the same symptoms. The mood stabilizer they put me on helped a ton but I was never successful at finding an anti depressant that worked. There was one we used that worked but had a 75 copay or something like that. It also gave me health issues like high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

My psychiatrist has told me that treating bipolar depression is really hard. There's also the added complexity that for a lot of people with bipolar SSRI's make mania worse. I've never had that issue and I'm not sure if that's because of my diagnosis or because meds don't tend to effect me that negatively

Sorry I can't answer specific questions about screening.


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Re: Bipolar II Screening - February 1st 2021, 09:38 PM

I have officially been diagnosed with Bipolar II!


   
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Re: Bipolar II Screening - February 1st 2021, 11:39 PM

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I have officially been diagnosed with Bipolar II!
How are you feeling about that? Do you need some support?


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Re: Bipolar II Screening - February 2nd 2021, 12:09 AM

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How are you feeling about that? Do you need some support?
Thanks for the offer <3 I think I'm okay with it. I'm just happy to have answers. A lot of what she said when she was talking with me today just made so much sense.


   
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Re: Bipolar II Screening - February 2nd 2021, 10:23 AM

It's great you finally got answers! Do you feel like knowing will affect you much?


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Re: Bipolar II Screening - February 3rd 2021, 12:54 AM

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It's great you finally got answers! Do you feel like knowing will affect you much?
I think the main thing is having explanations for why things are the way they are. She thinks I'm hypomanic right now and that in general I try to avoid my anxiety, etc so when I'm hypomanic it's like I'm jumping out of my skin. So I avoid anything that triggers anxiety. That and some other things she said I'm like wow, that makes sense!


   
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Re: Bipolar II Screening - February 3rd 2021, 02:56 AM

[FONT=""][COLOR=""][SIZE=""]If your taking an antidepressant and do not get mania or hypomania on it then you probably do not have bipolar. You say you have bipolar but then you say you take an antidepressant and are fine on an antidepressant therefore you are not bipolar. If you seriously had bipolar then you would get manic or hypomanic while your taking an antidepressant. That tells you right there that you really do not have bipolar.

If you seriously had bipolar you wouldn't be doing well on an antidepressant and if you seriously had bipolar you wouldn't be able to handle your stressful job and school well. You seem to handle school and and your stressful job off meds or with just an antidepressant therefore that's indication you do not have bipolar. Some one with bipolar off meds and or on an antidepressant would struggle with trying to do school and a stressful job. Oh and you say you never sleep but there is no indication to me that you have mentioned that your experiencing hypomania and mania therefore another indication your not bipolar. Not sleeping causes people that have bipolar to experience more likely mania or hypomania. If you rarely sleep and truly had bipolar then you would be experiencing hypomanic and or manic symptoms from never sleeping but your not. You seemed burnout but that can happen to any one and is not related to bipolar.

In my experience psychiatrist do not diagnose properly and are way to quick to diagnose which means soo many people get mis diagnosed and over diagnosed. I had one psychiatrist on my first day meeting her she said your talking fast so you have bipolar . I was like umm you can not diagnose bipolar that quickly well I guess you could but its not right. I was like i have only known you for literally 20 min and you seriously are diagnosing with bipolar that quickly. I was like bye. Talking fast is a symptom of so many other things and disorders therefore she shouldn't have just jumped to its bipolar. She should have properly diagnosed which means taking more time to come to a diagnosis.

If you get diagnosed with bipolar they usually have you drugged up on powerful psychiatric drugs so be careful wanting to be diagnosed. It s not something you want to have. Be truthful and honest about your symptoms and how long they last. Advocate for yourself as well. You should know if you truly have bipolar or not. You should know if you truly get manic and or hypomanic or not.[/size][/color][/font]
   
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Re: Bipolar II Screening - February 3rd 2021, 03:00 AM

[FONT=""][COLOR=""][SIZE=""]Its not just getting hypomanic spoons. Its also depression. After your hypomanic do you fall in to a depression. Just to remind you that there is a difference between happy and hypomanic and there is a difference between sad and depression.[/size][/color][/font]
   
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Re: Bipolar II Screening - February 3rd 2021, 03:12 AM

I'm using an antidepressant, yes, but I am also using a mood stabilizer that is commonly used to treat bipolar disorder and is especially effective in Bipolar II disorder. I am also on two other medications, so four total, and just got prescribed a PRN as well, so that'll make five. Besides the PRN, I was on the four medications well before I was diagnosed with bipolar and used those four medications throughout grad school. I was on at least two of them during undergrad, and definitely could use the PRN at points during work. However, it's a controlled substance so I have to wait for the roads to be clearer to Uber there to pick it up.

I do fall into a depression. From what I understand, unlike Bipolar I, Bipolar II is characterized by more severe depressive episodes, whereas Bipolar I is characterized by more severe mania. I definitely have more episodes of depression, but the hypomania is harder to deal with than the depression in some ways because I am "used" to the depression. The fast speech thing you mentioned though, I understand that because that's been my normal speech pattern all my life. She actually asked me if I spoke slower than usual, which is definitely a no.

I also definitely do sleep (on a weird sleep schedule, sure), but when I am able, I sleep way too much. I can sleep 12-14 hours at a time and still be tired. When I have to be awake I try to nap, although unfortunately with work that's not been possible lately. Sleeping too much is also a symptom of bipolar II. Honestly I've been chronically fatigued since at least my freshman year of high school so it could be a mix of things. I've also had some form of mental illness since the 8th grade though.

I trust the diagnosis of my professional at this time, but I will be sure to get a second opinion if I deem it necessary. Thank you for the response though and your thoughts!


   
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Re: Bipolar II Screening - February 3rd 2021, 03:50 AM

[FONT=""][COLOR=""][SIZE=""]4 every day psychiatric drugs. That seems excessive and if I were you I would definitely get a second opinion. Less every day psychiatric drugs in my opinion is better. 4 every day psychiatric drugs that's over drugging and excessive. I just hope you advocate for yourself and do your own research on the drugs you are choosing to put in your body. Just for your information-Antipsychotics are very powerful and are Higley known to cause akathisia and Tardive dyskinesia. Doctors are humans not Gods therefore they do make mistakes and are not always right. If I were you I would try to only be on only one or two every day psychiatric drugs. Less is better. Don't rely on meds so much to make it all better. You have to do the work as well. Go to therapy learn holistic ways of getting better to not rely on medication so much. For example you could maybe just be on the mood stabilizer, and if you still are dealing with mild depression well instead of adding another psychiatric drug you can easily learn ways in therapy to over come that mild depression. I am saying all this because I care and I know psychiatric drugs are not just like taking a Tylenol.

Please advocate for yourself. Take care[/size][/color][/font]
   
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Re: Bipolar II Screening - February 4th 2021, 01:37 PM

Just wanted to remind users and guests that we cannot give medical advice.

Dez, bipolar 2 definitely has more depressive episodes than mania. I suffer from mania occasionally but the longest its lasted is three days. My mom had bipolar and her mania lasted longer and happened way more often.

I would also like to mention that when someone has a bipolar diagnosis medication is almost always necessary in order to help manage the symptoms. Therapy is important with any mental health diagnosis but there are mental illnesses that require medications long term such as schizophrenia, bipolar, MDD etc. If the medication are working than keep taking them. If they are not working than talk to your doctor.

If you have any other questions about bipolar 2 I might be able to help.


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Re: Bipolar II Screening - February 5th 2021, 02:40 AM

I’ve just spent all these years undiagnosed and not having answers. Is there anything you think is important to know? My aunt has it but I’m not sure what type. So I told my sister to make sure she adds it to her and my niece’s family history


   
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Re: Bipolar II Screening - February 5th 2021, 04:31 AM

[FONT=""][COLOR=""][SIZE=""]We don't talk about mental illness in my family. It's just awkward and un comfortable and my parents really don't know about mental illness and do not know how to deal with it. They don't have a lot of compassion, empathy, and validation ): So I just deal with it on my own.[/size][/color][/font]
   
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