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Bipolar II Disorder

A less severe type of bipolar disorder characterized by depressive and hypomanic episodes.

Common

More than 200,000 US cases per year

  • Treatment can help, but this condition can’t be cured
  • Chronic: can last for years or be lifelong
  • Requires a medical diagnosis
  • Lab tests or imaging rarely required

It involves at least one depressive episode lasting at least two weeks and at least one hypomanic episode lasting at least four days.

Depressive symptoms include sadness or hopelessness. Hypomanic symptoms include a persistently elevated or irritable mood.

Treatment includes counseling and medications, such as mood stabilizers.

Ages affected

Symptoms

Requires a medical diagnosis

Depressive symptoms include sadness or hopelessness. Hypomanic symptoms include a persistently elevated or irritable mood.

People may experience:

Mood: mood swings, anxiety, deep sadness, euphoria, general discontent, guilt, hopelessness, or loss of interest or pleasure in activities
Behavioral: compulsive behavior, impulsivity, irritability, restlessness, or self-harm
Cognitive: lack of concentration, racing thoughts, slowness in activity, or thoughts of suicide
Sleep: excess sleepiness or insomnia
Psychological: depression or grandiosity
Also common: rapid and frenzied speaking

Treatments

Treatment depends on severity

Treatment includes counseling and medications, such as mood stabilizers.

Therapies

Cognitive behavioral therapy: A talk therapy focused on modifying negative thoughts, behaviors, and emotional responses associated with psychological distress.
Psychoeducation: Education about mental health that also serves to support, validate, and empower patients.
Psychotherapy: Treatment of mental or behavioral disorders through talk therapy.

Medications

Antipsychotic: Reduces or improves the symptoms of certain psychiatric conditions.

  • Risperidone (Risperdal, Risperdal Consta, and Risperdal M-TAB)
  • Quetiapine (Seroquel and Seroquel XR)
  • Ziprasidone
  • Olanzapine (Zyprexa, Zyprexa Relprevv, and Zyprexa Zydis)
  • Aripiprazole (Abilify)
  • Clozapine (Clozaril, FazaClo, and Versacloz)

Antidepressant: Prevents or relieves depression and elevates mood.

  • Bupropion (Zyban, Aplenzin, Wellbutrin XL, Wellbutrin SR, and Forfivo XL)
  • Venlafaxine (Effexor XR)

Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor (SSRI): Eases symptoms of depressed mood and anxiety.

  • Fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem, and Prozac Weekly)

Specialists

Clinical psychologist: Treats mental disorders primarily with talk therapy.
Psychiatrist: Treats mental disorders primarily with medications.
Primary care provider (PCP): Prevents, diagnoses, and treats diseases.

Consult a doctor for medical advice
Note: The information you see describes what usually happens with a medical condition, but doesn’t apply to everyone. This information isn’t medical advice, so make sure to contact a healthcare provider if you have a medical problem. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or a emergency number immediately.

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