If you have been diagnosed as manic depressive, your doctor will also share with you that you will have either one of two bipolar disorder types. It may not be clear right away though as you may need more observation of your symptoms. The two categories are Bipolar 1 and Bipolar 2. There is also a third related category, cyclothymic disorder or cyclothymia.

Here’s some information about each type of manic depression.

Type 1: When a person has bipolar 1 disorder, he or she has at least one manic episode in his or her life. During the manic episode, the person experiences an elevated mood. The person could also experience mixed symptoms which includes having both a mania and depression episode every day for at least one week. Bipolar 1 is the more serious of the two types of manic depression. It results in a major change in a person’s usual behavior.

Type 2: When a person has bipolar 2 disorder, he or she experiences one or more depressive episodes along with one hypomanic episode. Hypomanic episodes are similar to manic episodes but are less severe. For some, hypomania isn’t as disruptive because the person doesn’t experience full-blown mania or mixed symptoms. Bipolar 2 is the less serious of the two types of manic depression.

-Some may also receive a rapid-cycling bipolar disorder diagnosis. Rapid-cycling is when a person experiences four or more episodes of major depression, mania, hypomania or mixed episodes within one year.

Cyclothymic disorder, Cyclothymia

Cyclothymic disorder is known as a mild form of bipolar disorder. Those with cyclothymic disorder experience chronic fluctuations in mood: periods of hypomania and depression over a course of at least two years. These moods come in shorter, less severe instances and are not severe enough to be considered bipolar 1 or 2. These mood swings can impair social interactions and could develop into a worsened form of manic depression.

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