Thursday, December 1, 2022

Can You Have Ptsd And Bipolar

Don't Miss

Learn The Differences Between These Two Disorders How To Spot The Signs Of Each And How To Treat Them

Can You Have Bipolar Disorder Borderline Personality? |Heres Why It Matters

Life is turbulent, and changing moods can often be a natural response to stressful situations.

But for some, mood shifts are so extreme that they could be a sign of more serious conditions such as borderline personality disorder and bipolar disorder, both of which are characterized in part by major mood swings, according to Frank Yeomans, M.D., Ph.D., director of training at the NewYork-Presbyterian Borderline Personality Disorder Resource Center, an internationally recognized center for the study of personality disorders, and a clinical associate professor of psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medicine Department of Psychiatry.

This partial similarity in mood shifts, going from an extremely high mood to a very low mood, causes many people, including some clinicians, to confuse the two disorders, says Dr. Yeomans, who is also an adjunct associate professor of psychiatry at the Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research. Yet they are two distinct and serious diagnoses with different symptoms that require different methods of treatment.

Both illnesses affect millions of Americans. Bipolar disorder is estimated to affect 2.8 percent, or roughly 6.5 million adults, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. The prevalence of borderline personality disorder is estimated to range from 1.6 to 5.9 percent of the American adult population.

Bipolar Borderline And Ptsd: What’s The Difference

Linnea Butler is the founder of Bay Area Mental HealthDiagnosing mental illness is an imperfect science. trouble sleeping, thoughts of suicide, not being able to maintain relationships, feeling worthless, racing thoughts, inability to focus, low energy, and feeling heightened emotionsSo why does the DSM distinguish between these problems?

Childhood Trauma Psychological Dimensions Cognition And Brain Imaging Abnormalities In Bd

One might postulate that childhood trauma is driving clinical outcomes through non-specific dimensions of psychopathology .

Affective lability is suggested as a core feature of BD that manifests itself as frequent and intense fluctuations in affect in response to both pleasant and unpleasant events. In BD, studies have found heightened affective lability in both manic and mixed episodes , as well as traits during euthymic periods . A previous study has linked childhood trauma to later affective lability in personality disorders and in BD . Also in BD, one large study and a smaller study have demonstrated that exposure to childhood trauma is associated with higher scores on affective lability, with the strongest association being that for emotional abuse . Furthermore, in an Emotion Recognition Task, patients with BD and childhood emotional neglect have a reduced performance in recognizing anger, compared to subjects without any trauma . Interestingly, childhood trauma is associated with increased amygdala activation , a brain region important for regulating fear and emotions , thus reinforcing potential links between childhood trauma, changes in emotional or affect regulation and brain imaging abnormalities .

You May Like: Can A Child Get Disability For Scoliosis

Is There A Relationship Between Bipolar Disorder And Ptsd

The Relationship Between Bipolar Disorder and PTSD. Studies have found that anywhere between 11% to 39% of bipolar patients also meet criteria for PTSD. It is not entirely surprising that high rates of PTSD are found among people with bipolar disorder, as many people with bipolar also have a history of traumatic exposure.

What are the different types of bipolar disorder?

There are two types of bipolar disorders, described as bipolar I and bipolar II. In bipolar I disorder, a person has experienced one or more manic episodes. In most cases of bipolar I, episodes of major depression are a central aspect of the overall course of the illness.

How to be in a relationship with someone with bipolar disorder?

Being in a healthy relationship with someone with bipolar disorder requires not only careful management of their illness, but also setting aside time to take good care of yourself.

Hypomania Can Go Unnoticed

What to know about bipolar disorder

Some people with bipolar II who present to clinicians do not have a clear history of hypomania.

What is Hypomania?

Hypomania refers to an elevation in mood that is less drastic than mania. Hypomania may sometimes be enjoyable due to the increased energy and confidence that often come with it. However, it can still lead to impulsive behaviour with adverse consequences, such as overspending and damaging personal relationships. Because it is more subtle in how it is experienced, it is harder to pick up.

Because it is enjoyable, people with bipolar II may not seek treatment during a hypomanic episode. Research suggests that people with bipolar II are more likely to seek treatment for a depressive episode than a hypomanic episode. Hypomania also does not tend to involve psychotic symptoms , or a serious break from reality. Furthermore, hypomania does not tend to end in hospitalisation, as mania sometimes does.

Hypomania is therefore less likely to be recognised by mental health professionals, the person with h bipolar II or their family and close friends. This could explain the research finding that misdiagnosis of bipolar disorder as unipolar depression is more common in bipolar type II than in bipolar type I7.

Donât Miss: What Is The Meaning Of Phobia

Read Also: Is Post Traumatic Stress Disorder A Disability Uk

Similarities Between Bipolar Disorder And Ptsd

Although bipolar disorder and PTSD are different illnesses, there is some overlap between them. Both disorders can cause people to experience depression, which has distinct characteristics. A person with either disorder may:

  • Have low energy or feel tired
  • Socially withdraw from others, including family members
  • Have a hard time concentrating on what theyre doing
  • Find it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep
  • Have trouble remembering things or experience mind fog
  • Oversleep or sleep for long periods
  • Show no interest in activities they once enjoyed
  • Have suicidal thoughts or other self-harm

People with bipolar and PTSD can also experience other paranoia, restlessness, and detachment. They also can feel hyper-aware or that they must always be on guard, which overtaxes the body and brain. To self-medicate against these symptoms, they could turn to addictive drugs and alcohol to find relief. While this may provide temporary comfort, it is not safe or effective, and it can lead to the development of substance dependence or addiction.

Having an additional illness only complicates the existing mental illness. A person who develops a substance use disorder in addition to a mental illness must receive professional treatment for each illness at the same time to improve their overall health.

Treat The Trauma To Treat Mental Illness

Trauma in itself is not a mental illness. It is a cause and a risk factor, though, and underlies many mental health issues. It is clearly the cause of C-PTSD, but it may also be a contributing factor to bipolar disorder, especially in those with both conditions.

Both mental illnesses can be chronic. Bipolar disorder treatment usually results in periods of recovery, but relapses are common. PTSD can often be cured over time, but C-PTSD can become chronic. An important way to minimize the symptoms of these difficult conditions is to address the underlying trauma.

If mental health professionals can help you process those terrible past experiences, youll be able to better manage both C-PTSD and bipolar disorder. Some important types of trauma-focused treatment include:

  • Behavioral Therapies. Trauma-focused behavioral therapies help you talk through negative beliefs, thoughts, and behaviors while making positive changes and learning new, productive ways to cope.
  • Eye Movement Desensitization Therapy. This type of therapy is useful for minimizing frightening memories and flashbacks. It involves using eye movements and recalling trauma to process it and react to it in a new way.
  • Prolonged Exposure Therapy. Exposure therapy involves confronting past traumas head on but in a safe, supportive therapy environment. It sometimes involves using virtual reality technology.

You May Like: How Much Will My Ssi Disability Benefits Be

How Are They Different

The most significant difference between these two mental health conditions is the origin. The exact cause of bipolar disorder is unclear, but it tends to run in families, so genetics is a factor. Bipolar disorder can also occur due to physical changes in the brain from drug use or periods of high stress.

Post-traumatic stress disorder isnt necessarily a genetic condition, although those with inherited mental health risks may be more likely to have it. It generally focuses on a trigger that involves high stress, trauma, or fear. Having a condition like bipolar disorder increases your risk of developing PTSD.

Substance Abuse And Mental Health Issues

What Is Bipolar Disorder?

Many people with a substance use disorder have an underlying mental health condition like PTSD or bipolar disorder. When considering treatment programs like Westwind Recovery®, its essential to look at options that offer dual diagnosis services.

Substance abuse can be a way for those with PTSD or bipolar disorder to self-medicate. Treating just the addiction and not the underlying mental health condition will increase the risk of relapse.

Westwind Recovery® is an addiction treatment center and sober living program in Los Angeles that does offer help for co-occurring conditions like PTSD treatment and services for bipolar disorder.

This addiction treatment facility provides:

  • Six residential beds
  • 80 outpatient treatment slots

Westwind specializes in offering mental health treatment and adventure therapy with monthly outings for camping, hiking, and more.

Their sober living program offers residences with semi and private rooms and laundry facilities. Each of the separate homes has a specialty such as treatment for co-occurring disorders. Along with client-centered addiction treatment, youll find family therapy, art therapy, life skills programs, music therapy, and virtual reality meditation at Westwind Recovery®. They also offer medication-assisted treatment for those with opioid addiction.

Don’t Miss: Can You Work And Draw Disability

Why Ptsd Is Sometimes Misdiagnosed As Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is one of the most misused terms in mental health.

People use the term bipolar to describe typical swings from good to bad days, so its no surprise that PTSD with its intense moods and anxiety can be lumped into this category as well, says Dimitriu.

I emphasize to all my patients that a true bipolar diagnosis involves mood states that last for days and involve changes in sleep and energy. Clusters of regrettable behavior are another marker worth exploring for bipolar. Mood tracking helps here, he suggests.

Also, it can be difficult for those who have experienced trauma to talk about it.

If a medical professional isnt aware of someones trauma background a key distinction of PTSD versus bipolar disorder then the several overlapping symptoms could steer a diagnosis in the wrong direction.

There are options for treating PTSD, which include:

  • individual psychotherapy

Impacts Every Aspect Of Life

PTSD and bipolar disorder can both have a significant impact on every aspect of a persons life. This includes their work, relationships, and social life. It can be very difficult to cope with both conditions at the same time. According to studies, people with PTSD and bipolar disorder are more likely to have a lower quality of life than those with just one condition.

These are just some of the consequences that can come from having PTSD and bipolar. As you can see, it is very important to get an accurate diagnosis and treatment for both conditions. If you or someone you know is struggling with PTSD and bipolar, there are a number of resources that can help.

Recommended Reading: Can You Work Part Time On Social Security Disability

Treatment For Ptsd And Bipolar Disorder

Proper treatment for both PTSD and bipolar disorder tends to include treatment from a psychiatrist, as well as treatment from a therapist.

For bipolar disorder, medications such as mood stabilizers and antipsychotics may be used. While PTSD doesnt have medications specifically for the PTSD itself, it does have some medications that can be used to treat certain mood-related symptoms brought on by the PTSD.

Its important to receive proper treatment for either condition, because oftentimes one illness can trigger the other.

Ptsd Causes And Risk Factors

Can You Have Ptsd From A Depressive Episode

Everyone reacts to traumatic events differently. Each person is unique in their ability to manage fear, stress and the threat posed by a traumatic event or situation. For that reason, not everyone who has a trauma will develop PTSD. Also, the type of help and support a person receives from friends, family members, and professionals following the trauma may impact the development of PTSD or the severity of symptoms.

PTSD was first brought to the attention of the medical community by war veterans hence the names shell shock and battle fatigue syndrome. However, anyone who has had a traumatic event can develop PTSD. People who were abused as children or who have been repeatedly exposed to life-threatening situations are at risk for developing PTSD. Victims of trauma related to physical and sexual assault face the greatest risk for PTSD.

You may be more likely to develop PTSD after a traumatic event if you have a history of other mental health problems, have blood relatives with mental health problems, or have a history of alcohol or drug abuse.

How common is PTSD?

About 3.6% of adult Americans — about 5.2 million people — have PTSD during the course of a year, and an estimated 7.8 million Americans will develop PTSD at some point in their lives. PTSD can develop at any age, including childhood. Women are more likely to develop PTSD than men. This may be due to the fact that women are more likely to be victims of domestic violence, abuse, and rape.

Also Check: Why Is My Va Disability Check Less

How Are Ptsd And Bipolar Disorder Similar And How Are They Different

PTSD and bipolar disorder have their similarities and differences. However, it has been found that up to 40% of those with bipolar disorder also meet the diagnostic criteria for PTSD.

Lets start with similarities first. PTSD and depressive episodes can have very similar symptoms at times. Not only can both force you to lose interest in things you used to regularly enjoy, but they can also provide a certain amount of emotional numbness. Irritability and emotional outbursts can also be prevalent in both.

In regards to PTSDs similarities with manic episodes, both people with PTSD and bipolar disorder can experience paranoia, and nightmares are possible. Like some with PTSD, those with bipolar disorder experiencing a manic episode may have trouble concentrating, however it is for different reasons. For those with PTSD, it can be due to the after-effects of the trauma, but for those experiencing a manic episode, it can be due to racing thoughts.

PTSD does not have the extreme emotional mood shifts the way bipolar disorder does.

Other Terms For Complex Ptsd

Complex PTSD is a fairly new term. Professionals have recognised for a while that some types of trauma can have additional effects to PTSD, but have disagreed about whether this is a form of PTSD or an entirely separate condition, and what it should be called.

For example, you may find some doctors or therapists still use one of the following terms:

  • enduring personality change after catastrophic experience
  • disorders of extreme stress not otherwise specified this term is more common in America than the UK.

âAt times I felt nothing was going to end the distress, experiencing more than 10 flashbacks a day⦠It was a long process of recovery, with lots of bumps along the road, but the right medication and long-term therapy with someone I came to trust, has changed my life.â

You May Like: How To Help A Child With Physical Disability

Similarities And Differences Between Ptsd And Bipolar Disorder

There are several types of bipolar disorder, depending on your symptoms.

To be diagnosed with bipolar I disorder, you must have at least one manic episode, and a major depressive episode might follow. For some people, the manic episode could involve a detachment from reality .

If you experience at least one major depressive episode and at least one hypomanic episode but never a manic episode, you might be diagnosed with bipolar II disorder.

Cyclothymic disorder can occur when youve experienced many periods of hypomania and depressive episodes over two years .

This is a form of bipolar disorder whereby symptoms are present over a long period. Other types of bipolar disorder can occur due to drugs, alcohol, or certain medical conditions.

PTSD can occur due to a single traumatic event that leads to problems with sleep and emotional, physical, or behavioral issues over at least one month.

For experiences with chronic traumatic events , the current PTSD diagnostic criteria may not capture all of the psychological impacts. Instead, you might be diagnosed with complex PTSD, particularly if the trauma repeats for months or even years.

How Can You Receive A Diagnosis With Both Conditions

Complex PTSD (CPTSD) and Strategies to Cope

Most people who have a dual diagnosis of bipolar disorder and BPD receive one diagnosis before the other. Thats because the symptoms of one disorder can overlap and sometimes mask the other.

Bipolar disorder is often diagnosed first because symptoms can change. This makes it more difficult to detect BPD symptoms. With time and treatment for one disorder, the other may become clearer.

Pay a visit to your doctor and explain your symptoms if you think youre showing signs of bipolar disorder and BPD. Theyll likely conduct an assessment to determine the nature and extent of your symptoms.

Your doctor will use the newest edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual to help them make a diagnosis. Theyll review each of your symptoms with you to see if they align with the other disorder.

Your doctor will also consider your mental health history. Often, this can provide insight that can help distinguish one disorder from the other. For example, both bipolar disorder and BPD tend to run in families. This means if you have a close relative with one or both of the disorders, youre more likely to have them.

The treatments of bipolar disorder and BPD are different because each disorder causes different symptoms.

Bipolar disorder requires several types of treatment, including:

BPD is primarily treated with talk therapy the same type of therapy that can help treat bipolar disorder. But your doctor may also suggest:

Also Check: Do You Get Taxes Back If Your On Disability

More articles

Popular Articles