Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition that involves severe fluctuations in a person’s mood, ranging from deep depression to an energetic, euphoric high. This euphoric high is typically referred to as mania. If you have bipolar disorder and remain in a manic state for an extended period, you may require mania and bipolar treatment or hospitalization. In a manic state, your judgment is impaired, and you can pose a danger to yourself or others. For these reasons, it is essential to have a strong grasp of the warning signs of a manic episode.
Understanding the signs of a manic episode and knowing when to seek help are important steps in treating bipolar disorder. If you or a loved one is exhibiting signs of mania, you should consider the care of a bipolar disorder treatment program. Reach out to the Atlanta Center for Mental Health by calling 833.625.0458 to learn about our care options and how you can live a thriving, stable life with bipolar disorder.
What is a Manic Episode?
A manic episode is defined as entering into a state of mania for at least one week. In minor cases, a manic episode can end within a few days, but untreated, it could go on for months. The symptoms can vary from person to person. Some people might feel great in a manic episode, while others might be constantly irritated. Still, all manic episodes are defined by heightened energy as well as drastic mood and behavioral changes. Mania is only seen in one type of bipolar disorder: bipolar I. If you have been diagnosed with bipolar II, you likely experience more mild manic symptoms, often known as hypomania.
A manic episode can result in a myriad of negative effects for those living with bipolar disorder. Often, mania can have a serious impact on work, school, and interpersonal relationships. People in the throes of mania find it difficult to sleep or concentrate and often engage in risky behavior such as drug use, hypersexuality, and overspending. In severe cases, manic episodes can even result in psychosis such as delusions or hallucinations.
3 Signs of a Manic Episode
Since extended manic episodes can be dangerous, it is important to recognize the signs of a manic episode in yourself or your loved ones and be aware of mania and bipolar treatment options. Some of the warning signs of mania include but are not limited to sudden changes in energy, activity, or agitation, severe and unexpected mood changes, and risky behavior.
Sudden Changes in Energy, Activity, or Agitation
The primary and often most noticeable sign of a manic episode is a sudden change in energy, activity, or agitation. People experiencing mania often report boundless energy. They may speak unusually rapidly, sleep little, throw themselves into projects, and restlessly hyper-fixate to the exclusion of other activities. These can come seemingly out of nowhere and often are an extremely noticeable shift for close friends and family.
Severe and Unexpected Mood Changes
Oftentimes, mania exhibits itself in intense self-aggrandizing euphoria, but people in manic episodes may also show intense excitability or even veer into unusually aggressive mannerisms. These changes can appear as a sudden burst of creativity or be more bizarre and nonsensical. Some people might try to take on a project they have little experience with, and others might become lost in grandiose thinking, convinced that they have a special connection to cultural figures or even God.
Mania may also show itself as particularly risky behaviors. These often put the person in the most direct danger, as their impaired judgment leads them into situations they would normally avoid. Some behaviors to look out for include:
- Impulsive gambling
- Extravagant spending beyond one’s means
- Unsafe driving
- Risky business ventures
- Increased substance use
- Unusual sexual activity
Learn More About Mania and Bipolar Disorder Treatment
If you or a loved one are exhibiting any of these behaviors and they are impeding your ability to function in daily life, seeking out treatment is essential. A healthy, safe, and stable life is within reach at the Atlanta Center for Mental Health. Call 833.625.0458 or fill out our online contact form to learn about the options available through our bipolar treatment program.