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  1. #1
    DF Super Moderator Over Carl's Avatar
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    Advice Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    About two weeks ago I identified I had been suffering from a manic episode which the docs confirmed last week.

    After doing further reading I am pretty certain it was actually a mixed/dysphoric episode. Docs seem pretty certain it was all due to the steroids I was on, but looking back I can clearly identify two other manic episodes with no medication involved, and the difference in me while manic/dysphoric makes me feel like it has opened up my eyes to the fact that something wasn't right before which fitting around the symptoms and current diagnosis would most likely be to Bipolar.

    At the time when I had the two previous episodes, I I noticed things weren't normal but at the time I thought it was simply due to confidence rising in a massive positive feedback loop just because everything at the time was going more perfectly than imaginable. Also I suspect those were more "clean" manic episodes where everything felt brilliant and it wasn't drug induced, while this one has been more of a mixed episode maybe because it was triggered by meds, and this was kind of nice and kind of horrible at the same time.

    Prioblem is the docs won't even entertain the idea it might not be because of the meds at this moment in time, and I suspect I'm gradually transitioning to my "normal" state but my head seems to be at a different place nearly every day and I have no idea what to expect as the docs seem to want to talk about everything else and as soon as I get round to my mental concerns they just rudely remind me they have run out of time and have other patients to see, even though I have spent half a day I really cannot afford to waste waiting for a 10 min appointment desperately hoping to get some answers but just getting fobbed off every time.

    Pretty disappointed as I had requested a psych evaluation of myself while in hospital which totally missed I was either manic or dysphoric at the time. Tried to get my Macmillan nurse to put a little pressure on my doc, but even though she eventually totally understood my concerns, I suspect only a fraction of these were relayed to my doc who I suspect only called to tick a few boxes (e.g. non suicidal) then shut me up again.

    If anyone has any first hand experience of Bipolar I would be very grateful if I could ask them as few questions as part of me worries I may be going off at a complete tangent with my armchair diagnosis which will then lead me to try and address these issues in an inappropriate manner, while the remainder of me is pretty certain I have figured it out and just would love to know where I am going and what to expect.

    I can understand if members don't want to admit being sufferers on the open board so I would be very grateful for replies in the thread or via pm.

    Before anyone wonders/worries, I'm generally ok and still moving onwards and upwards making progress in my life and I suspect if I do have issues they are at the less severe end of the spectrum, but getting no help or answers is doing my head in.
    Last edited by Over Carl; 14th June 2015 at 02:02 AM.

  2. #2
    DF Moderator piggzy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    Have been suggested by my doc that I may be Bipolar and suggested I pursue but I didnt !!!! If I can help in any way I will try .

    Thanks to piggzy

    Over Carl (14th June 2015) 


  3. #3
    DF Moderator piggzy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    Basically I have no grasp of emotion and I wont go into too much more detail!!!

    Wish I did but I don't.

    Thanks to piggzy

    Over Carl (14th June 2015) 


  4. #4
    DF Super Moderator Over Carl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    Kind of things I've noticed:

    Normal: Struggle to get out of bed before midday. Often wake up for a moment, decide while half asleep to go back to bed then curse myself when I eventually get up. Manic: Barely slept, jumped out of bed early every day and didn't feel tired at all.

    Normal: Generally a firm pessimist who always considers the worst case scenarios and likes to plan everything based on these. Manic: Complete opposite.

    Normal: Generally low levels of energy, often struggle with motivation. Manic: Endless energy and motivation, although very clouded and confused mind.

    Normal: Apart from the drink and smoke, I would be extremely frugal with money. Manic: Find it hard to not buy the nicer versions of everything, instead of going in to buy one tool I struggle to come out without buying 2-3 more.

    Normal: Not much interest in music, main interests older dance and reggae music. Manic: Much more interested in music even genres like pop that I would previously scoff at.

    Normal: Very relaxed and chilled out person. Manic: Sometimes behaves like a spoilt brat when things don't go right.

    Normal: Normal and healthy sexual desire, sadly attended to often by Palmella. Manic (this time but not last 2 previous): Virtual total loss of sexual desire.

    Normal: Sometimes struggle with focus and head sometimes not very clear. Manic (This time but not last 2 previous) Often stuggle with focus and head normally not very clear. Previous 2 Manic states: Super sharp focus and very clear head all the time.

    I suppose those are probably the most blatant signs but it kind of felt like I was still me but with a major personality transplant. Problem being even though this different state was supposedly not right, in many aspects it felt a lot better than normal.
    Last edited by Over Carl; 13th June 2015 at 11:43 PM.

    Thanks to Over Carl

    JonEp (14th June 2015) 


  5. #5
    DF Moderator JonEp's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    I think all of us who indulged in our youth can relate to many of those statements.

    3 Thanks given to JonEp

    DavidF (2nd July 2015), Mobileman (2nd July 2015), Over Carl (14th June 2015) 


  6. #6
    DF Super Moderator Over Carl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    I suppose that is another other worry - I may end up getting docs to pump a load of drugs into me to try and fix the effects of a load of previous drugs.

  7. #7
    DF Moderator JonEp's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    I was going to add.. It often starts with parents and Calpol!

    On a more serious note one of the current fixes appears to be CBT in order to help you look at situations from a second or third angle.

    I'm not sure through you can make any assumptions right now though OC whilst on prescribed medication, given your recent news the supplied drugs are bound to have an effect and side effects never mind the recent diagnosis.

    Thanks to JonEp

    Over Carl (14th June 2015) 


  8. #8
    DF PiMP katana's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    Bi polar was a fashionable thing to be a while ago, followed by bi sexual and then geek and now hipster.

    Having had a partner who is bi polar it was fucking scary when she was having an episode. But internet diagnosis is about as good as pissing in the rain. Why not block book two appointments to speak to your doctor, if not see another one in the surgery.

    CBT seems to be a panacia for all ills.

    If you want to have a chat PM me a number am in London too so near ish.

    Thanks to katana

    Over Carl (14th June 2015) 


  9. #9
    DF Jedi blacksheep's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    Does sound bipolar to me - I'd try cbt first before drugs as coming off some of them is worse than smack (and they won't warn you before). It sounds like hippy bullshit but it's all around hormone levels (mainly adrenaline and cortisol) in your body but try cbt (which is counciling with exercises to help control certain symptoms) and something called mindfulness (go to your local Buddhist centre (yes I know hippy shit).

    Know ow people it's worked for, that and exercise and cutting down alcohol. Dr. mate said in several trials mild to moderate depression (one side of bipolar) cbt and exercise performed as well if not better than pills. Pills can also have loads of nasty side effects - look up the side effects for cymbalta or fluoxetine which are a couple of the more popular ones out there. I don't think I know anyone that didn't have some side effects at least in the start even if something relatively mild like the shits.

    Thanks to blacksheep

    Over Carl (14th June 2015) 


  10. #10
    DF Super Moderator Over Carl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    Unfortunately exercise is not an option currently due to the potential AVM. Funny you mention alcohol, as they don't want to offer me any help I've tried getting pissed which appears to help bring me back down, which I suppose for me is "normal" so the funny thing is this is the best help I've received so far.

    In case anyone wonders if I can drink, why not exercise, I can feel my head throb if I run after I bus so I don't think that would be too clever.

  11. #11
    DF Jedi blacksheep's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    Something to raise your heartrate to over 120/130 if you can manage it should help but obv if impacting other condition don't. Alcohol is a depressant and also will impact your sleep, if you are drinking proper beer with lots of hops will help you sleep. Was more alcohol and meds can be bad mix and you're not often warned or strongly enough - mate of mine used to go nuts on Prozac and booze and we're not talking ten pints or something just 4/5

  12. #12
    DF Super Moderator Over Carl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    Alcohol was an experiment as I had been reading it can make people with Bipolar more depressed, I suspected I was previously normally Bipolar/depressed and a load of drink has made me feel a lot more normal so that kind of worked, although it could have just coincided with the steroids wearing off but I think I will refrain from drink in the future until my head is sorted.

    Unfortunately sleep seems like it's going back to normal as well, but at least I feel a lot less "crazy".

  13. #13
    DF Jedi blacksheep's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    Glad to hear it mate.

  14. #14
    DF PlaYa mij's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    I am Bi-Polar and have been since childhood but didn't get diagnosed until I was 40 (nearer 60 now).

    My experience is that help for a proper diagnosis in the NHS is almost non existent, I went private with the Priory after 10 years of being passed from pillar to post and getting nowhere apart from being offered drugs.

    Bi-Polar is split into three main categories of Cyclothymia, Bi-Polar 2 and Bi-Polar 1 although it now being accepted that it overlaps with many other illnesses such as Personality disorders so think of it more like being in a spectrum.

    For me and after many different treatments that for me were worse than the illness, I have decided to go drug free and manage the illness with a very strict lifestyle. I stick to a sleep pattern with a healthy diet and plenty of exercise, no stimulants of any kind (not even Caffeine), avoid any kind of stress if possible and just accept that I am ill and have to live life accordingly. It is a hard illness to live with and even harder for the people close to you. It also has one of the highest rates of suicide of all of the mental illnesses.

    My advice would be to make sure you get a proper diagnosis and if possible avoid the drugs unless absolutely needed, for me they zombified me and took away from me what I think of as me!

    The best piece of advice I can give is to accept the illness and change your life to fit in with it.

  15. #15
    DF Jedi akimba's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    Yeah I think Lithium is the drug of choice for Bipolar and is meant to cloud the mind so a zombie like state sounds about right.

    I am not sure it would help but I have been reading a brilliant book by Dr. Steven Peters - The Chimp Paradox (he is the sports philological genius behind a lot of top athletes in the UK) can be found in all the good "Usual Places" in an eBook version, that basically tells you how your mind works and how to spot signs of emotional behaviour and control them.

    At least give you something to do when not sleeping ;-)

    Thanks to akimba

    mij (2nd July 2015) 


  16. #16
    DF PlaYa mij's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    The trouble with CBT and books that tell you how to control your emotions are that with this illness it is like being a few different people.

    When I am in a normal/stable (whatever that is) mood everything CBT and such like states makes sense and is not needed as I am ok, once I leave my normal/stable state a completely different logic takes over rendering it useless.

    It's a bit like the quite placid mate we all have who goes mental after a few drinks and wants to fight the world etc... He can stop drinking and remain normal, with Bi-Polar we don't really know what the trigger is!

    Thanks to mij

    Over Carl (2nd July 2015) 


  17. #17
    Inactive
    Detector's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    do not go on lithium, its not good for you at all and you will need to constantly check your bloods/liver when you are on them,.
    try fluoxetine, im on that and its helped me a lot.
    A wise man once said " "

    Thanks to Detector

    Over Carl (2nd July 2015) 


  18. #18
    DF PlaYa mij's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    I very rarely suffer from depression so was prescribed antipsychotics like Quetiapine/Valproate. My main symptoms are Hypomania & sometimes mania and the exhaustion that follows.

    I agree though, these drugs for me are worse than the illness.

    Thanks to mij

    Over Carl (2nd July 2015) 


  19. #19
    DF Super Moderator Teajunkie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    Like det I'm on fluoxetine.

    i have been on them for a few years now after my big C diagnosis.
    not caused any issues for me at all and I take two at night (max dose).

    i missed a few doses when away and my wife noticed the difference in me.
    i was quiet withdrawn and angry, I would snap and shout which isn't me at all.

    when I got back within three days I was back to normal although the doctor gave me several doses of Valium to calm me down.
    Find me on Instagram and twitter @mrteajunke.

    2 Thanks given to Teajunkie

    Detector (2nd July 2015), Over Carl (2nd July 2015) 


  20. #20
    DF Moderator piggzy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone on here have any experience of Bipolar?

    Quote Originally Posted by Teajunkie View Post
    not caused any issues for me at all and I take two at night (max dose).


    Max is 3 mate. That's what I'm on.

    As you say if you miss em for a while you have zero patience/tolerance .

    2 Thanks given to piggzy

    Detector (2nd July 2015), Over Carl (2nd July 2015) 


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