When It's Not The Blues

bipolar

bipolar

(BlackDoctor.org) — Despite the stereotypes, mood disorders — especially bipolar disorder— are hard to recognize.  Particularly in the black community where it is considered a sign of weakness to seek professional help for mental health, moodiness and anxiety may be written off as stress and a part of life. But mental health problems need just as much medical attention as physical health problems.

While there’s usually no doubt that you may have a flu or another physical condition, recognizing bipolar disorder takes a little more work.  Here are some signs to look for to know when those ups and downs are more than just circumstance.

Extreme Happiness

Bipolar disorder is characterized by up-and-down episodes of extreme happiness and depression. Extreme happiness, or mania, is usually characterized by a break from reality, but sometimes it’s a high-energy state that still has some basis in reality. While it lasts, the feeling of being up is euphoric and you may feel full of energy and creativity.