Bipolar disorder is a complex disease with a long list of symptoms. You probably already know that bipolar disorder can cause mood swings and rapid changes in energy. Do you know that bipolar disorder symptoms can include substance abuse or increased sex drive? We will list some of the most frequently missed bipolar symptoms.
Substance and Drug Abuse
Bipolar symptoms can include abusing substances such as alcohol, prescription drugs, or even illegal drugs. Drug addiction can be its own disease, but you might not know that substance abuse can be a symptom of other diseases such as bipolar disorder. Someone with bipolar disorder might drink wine to calm down. During a manic period they might abuse Ritalin to stay up. They might even use a prescription anxiety medication like Valium to self-medicate during a manic period.
Problems in family life or issues with a friend or spouse don’t seem like signs of a serious illness on the surface. But people with bipolar disorder can struggle with their interactions with other people. For example, say you have bipolar disorder and you snap at a friend who asks you how work was. You become argumentative and pick fights with your brother. You forget about a dinner date with your spouse even though they claim they’ve been talking about it for a week.
Poor Performance in Work and School
Receiving bad grades in school or getting a bad review at work can be a sign of many different illnesses or even be a sign of stress. You might think bad grades in school indicate ADD, but this can also be a symptom of bipolar. You just can’t seem to concentrate because your mind jumps from one topic to the next. You feel great and don’t want to waste energy on some lousy work project. You received a bad grade on a test. You’re hopeless. You’re stupid. Why study? These examples can all indicate bipolar disorder.
Increased Drive to Achieve Goals
This symptom is definitely one of the most frequently missed bipolar symptoms. What’s wrong with ambition? You certainly wouldn’t think someone had a serious disease if they worked hard to strive for their goals. But if the ambition seems to come and go, and if the effort has a negative impact on yours or a loved one’s life, this could be a problem. For example, you stay up all night for several days to finish a project that will get you a promotion. You spend less time with family because you work overtime. After a couple months your boss raves about your performance and will consider you for the promotion. Yet, you suddenly lose energy and motivation.
Increased Sex Drive
Your spouse wants sex all the time. You know that decreased sex drive can be a symptom of mental illnesses. Did you know that increased sex drive is a sign of bipolar? For example, you can’t stop thinking about sex so you masturbate in a public place. You might cheat on your spouse. Your spouse snaps and claims that all you think about is sex.
These are all little known bipolar disorder symptoms. Call us today if you want to setup a free consultation.