Posted by: dinky | 2009-09-14


how exactly do they diagnose bipolar disorder? are low self esteem and low confidence symptoms of this disorder?

I have suffered with anxiety/nervousness, deppression mood swings, feelings of worthlessness etc.. after reading some articles and listening to some people talk about the subject I wondered if this could be the problem.

How wil I know if have bipolar disorder?

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Our expert says:
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ALL psyhiatric diagnoses these days ought to be made according to internationally recognized criteria, usually the DSM ( the Diagnostic & Statistical manual iof the American Psychiatric Association ) and you can google for these criteria.). The only way to get a good diiagnosis is to see a good specialist shrink for a full assessment, and then a discussion of diagnosis ( if any ) and recommended treatment ( if any).
Low self esteem and low confidence are NOt at all symptoms of Bipolar Disorder, and can exist, for their own reasons, with ANY disorder or none. They usually respond well to CBT ( Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy ), a well-proven form of talking therapy, and don't respond usefully to any form of medication. Mood swings certainly occur in Bipolar Disorder, but are usually severe / extreme and relatively slow, and autonomous --- if your mood sings up and down in response to external events, and within a single day, its almost vertainly NOT due to Bipolar Disorder.
There is no blood tyest or other test, other than a careful assessment by a shrink.

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Our users say:
Posted by: BPII | 2009-09-14

The diagnosis of Bipolar disorder takes more than a year or two to positively make. Your first step should be to contact a psychiatrtrist. Then take it from there. Good luck!

Reply to BPII
Posted by: Liza | 2009-09-14

You would need to see a psychiatrist who would be able to diagnose bipolar after an assessment. Unfortunately no easy blood test. And I don' t think that low self-esteem and low confidence are particular symptoms of bipolar. Although there are many bipolar people who do have low self-esteem, there are usually other reasons for the low self-esteem apart from the bipolar condition.

I think you would definitely benefit from visiting a therapist who specializes in CBT(Cognitive behaviour therapy) to improve the self-esteem and find ways to handle anxiety. The mood swings and depression might benefit from medication in addition to the CBT, but this can only be ascertained by a qualified psychiatrist.

Good Luck

Reply to Liza

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