My Dad and Dementia

Hello, everyone! Am Naaz (name changed), working as a writer in a reputed company. All am going to share is a few words about my lovely dad’s dementia. Like every other kid in this world, I too grew up by seeing my dad as a hero. His biggest plus is being nice to everyone without […]

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It’s a pity that even over 70 years after the first successful demonstration of its efficacy in the treatment of acute mental illnesses like schizophrenia, there is still very little informed public opinion about Electroconvulsive Therapy or ECT. Although, it is a fact that ECT is one of the most effective method for treating severe […]

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Yoga and beating alcoholism

Alcoholism is the dependency on alcohol that has a physiological and psychological impact on a person’s life. According to WHO, about 30% of Indians consume alcohol, out of which 4-13% are daily consumers and up to 50% of these, fall under the category of hazardous drinking. Another worrying trend from India is that the average […]

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Beating Addiction Stigma and S...

Recent Post How to find the best psychiatric hospital in Bangalore? It also provides the facility for family members to stay along with the patient; who gives them a better understanding of the…….. Is Manic Depression Genetic/ Hereditary? A chemical known as serotonin in the brain, has strong affects on an individual’s mood. The abnormalities […]

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Bipolar Disorder in Children

Bipolar Disorder

Is your child suddenly bursting with energy and active than other kids their age? Does your child suddenly feel depressed and have no interest in anything at all? Do other people say your child is too excited or too moody? Does he or she talk really fast about a lot of different things or talk nothing at all? Have their grades dropped? Are they grumpy? Do they engage in risky sexual behavior or talk about death or even suicide?

If you find yourself saying yes to the above questions, your child might have Bipolar Disorder, a serious mental illness. You need to make a visit to a psychiatric  health professional because prevention is better than cure.

What is Bipolar disorder?

 

Bipolar Disorder is a brain disorder that causes unusual shifts in mood, energy, activity levels, and ability to carry out day to day tasks. It is also known as Manic-depressive illness or Manic depression.

 

Who can get affected?

Anyone can develop Bipolar Disorder, including children and teens. However, the onset of Bipolar Disorder is in their late teen or early adult years. But it can occur in children of any age. A total of 8.7 million people is affected in India, out of which 0.2% – 0.4% are children. The illness usually lasts a lifetime.

 

What causes a Bipolar Disorder in Children?

There are no scientifically proven causes of bipolar disorder, but several factors may contribute to the illness. Family genes may be one factor because Bipolar Disorder sometimes runs in families.
Another factor that may lead to Bipolar Disorder is related to the brain structure or the brain function of the person with the disorder. Research says Bipolar disorder is usually triggered by a traumatic event when it happens once it can easily happen again without any triggers. Bipolar usually occurs due to an imbalance of chemicals in the brain and it’s often triggered by a traumatic event.

 

Children with Bipolar Disorder go through bizarre mood swings. The mood swings are more extreme. Sometimes they feel very happy, active, bursting with energy than other kids of the similar age group, i.e. manic episode. Whereas in the depressive episodes, the children feel very sad, dull and lazy.

 

Bipolar Disorder is not the normal change of mood every kid goes through. The symptoms are more powerful than normal. These symptoms are so strong that it affects the child’s overall wellbeing and hinders functioning in school and makes it very difficult to get along with friends and family. Some children even try to hurt themselves or attempt suicide. The episodes may occur anytime even while doing a simple art activity.

 

Signs and Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder in Children

The child with bipolar disorder may have manic episodes, depressive episodes, or ‘mixed’ episodes. A mixed episode has both manic and depressive symptoms. These mood episodes lead to symptoms that can last up to a week or two or sometimes longer. During an episode, the symptoms can last every day for most of the day.

 

Children and teens having a manic episode may experience :

 

  • Feel very happy or act silly in a way that’s unusual for them and for other people their age
  • Very short tempered
  • Talk really fast about a lot of different things
  • Has trouble sleeping but not feel tired
  • Has trouble staying focused, lack of concentration
  • Talk and think about sexual activities more often
  • Do risky things

 

Children and teens having a depressive episode may experience:

 

  • Feel very sad
  • Complain about pain a lot, such as stomachaches and headaches
  • Sleep too little or too much
  • Feel guilty and worthless
  • Eating too little or too much
  • Have little energy and no interest in fun activities
  •   Talk and  Think about death or suicide

 

How to treat children with Bipolar Disorder?

As a parent, you need to be more understanding and supportive by listening, giving them encouragement during their depression and divert them in their mania and consult a psychologist for evaluation and psychiatrist for medications. You also should monitor the side effects of the prescribed drugs like changes in weight, blood sugar level; talk to your child’s teacher as the child may need special allowances at school; follow a routine like help them get up, eat, exercise, and go to bed at roughly the same times each day; consider family therapy from your psychologist and take suicidal threats seriously.

 

Bipolar disorder in children takes you for a ride. It can be stressful for you. You have to cope up with your child’s mood swings and behaviors like indulging in risky activities, involving in fights, lowering of grades taking care of his or her academics, homework.

 

Sometimes, the stress can strain your relationship with your friends, spouse or relatives and might not have any ‘me’ time. Talk to a psychologist about your feeling and will help you deal with all the problems you are facing. Your child will definitely improve by regularly taking prescribed medications, frequent counseling and therapy from a psychologist, maintaining enough sleep and cutting out alcohol, caffeine and those having bipolar can easily manage their symptoms and continuing on living their lives.
Visit www.cadabams.org or call us @+91 96111 94949  to book an appointment for your child with our Medical Professional or psychiatrists and your problems will be dealt with care.

 

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