Mood swings, feeling sad or irritated, are a given. However, when such behaviour starts affecting the overall wellbeing by triggering extreme depression or manic phase of life, it can be perilous. The problem entails a wide array of issues, ranging from mild depression, aka dysthymia, to a major depressive disorder and bipolar symptoms. People suffering from mood disorder are at a higher risk of having heart attack, stroke, diabetes and other life threatening complications.
A single event or incident does not trigger mood imbalance, it takes a combined impact of environmental, psychological and biological factors to manifest acute manic phase of depression or bipolar stage of extremely energetic levels. Genetic factors also contribute to a great deal in developing the mental illness. In addition, brain imaging of people with depression and bipolar disorder seems to have a different structural and functional setup as compared to a normal brain, which triggers the mood swings.
Emotions vary from one person to another for those suffering from mood disorders. Those with depression include:
- Disinterest in anything, unyielding thoughts, loneliness and emptiness
- Guilt, hopelessness and sadness
- Suicidal thoughts and extreme pessimism
- Fatigue, insomnia, loss of appetite
- Failure to remember small things, lack of concentration
- Headaches, nausea, body pains and digestion issues
Those suffering from bipolar mania experience:
- Elation periods of extreme energy
- Restlessness and unusual feeling of snobbishness
- Agitated, irritated and always want to do something exciting
- Risk taking and trying to unnaturally seek pleasure in every small activity
- Jumping around, racing thoughts, talking rapidly without clarity of thoughts
- Overly aroused libido
- Insomnia and distractions
Anti-depressants are given to control depression and mood-stabilizing drugs to treat bipolar disorder. Patients will show withdrawal and dependence symptoms to the drugs that will wane off with time. Cognitive and behavioural therapies are also incorporated to gain control over emotions and extreme moods.