What is bipolar disorder?

Bipolar disorder, known in the past as manic depression, is a condition that affects people's moods, which can swing from one extreme to another.

People with bipolar disorder have periods of:

  • Depression - where they feel very low and lethargic
  • Mania - where they feel very high and overactive
  • Les severe mania is known as hypomania

The exact causes of bipolar disorder are unknown and it is relatively common - around one person in 100 is diagnosed with the condition.

Source: NHS Choices

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