A new research study in Pittsburgh suggests that children are more likely to show signs of bipolar disorder if they have one or more bipolar parents. This information could be vital in the early diagnosis and treatment of bipolar disorder, improving the lives of at-risk children and their loved ones.
What Is Bipolar Disorder?
Before we go into detail about how this new research could improve bipolar treatments in the future, we need to go over what bipolar disorder really is. This condition, also known as manic depressive disorder, involves extreme mood shifts that occur without warning or stimulation. Someone suffering from this condition may go from a state of elation to a state of deep-set depression in a short period of time, creating a series of struggles that only get worse if left untreated.
If you or someone you know may have bipolar disorder, talk to your physician about getting an evaluation. You may also read over the signs of bipolar disorder to see if you are showing symptoms of this condition.
How This New Bipolar Study Impacts Treatments In The Future
In order to have the best chance at success with manic depressive disorder, it is best to being treatment at the first signs. This new study shows that children whose parents suffer with bipolar disorder may exemplify signs of the condition themselves long before medical diagnosis. Recognizing these symptoms may allow therapists and physcians alike to create treatment plans for children before their symptoms spiral out of control.
In the study, researchers assessed 391 children with at least one bipolar parent and 248 children without bipolar parents over the course of seven years. The children were all from the Pittsburgh area, and they ranged in age from 6 to 18 years old. In the group with a bipolar parent, moderate bouts of manic behavior during childhood proved to be indicators of serious problems later on in life. These episodes were not severe enough to warrant a psychiatric evaluation at the time, but they appeared to be predecessors for mental health issues to come.
The lead researcher for the study, Dr. David Axelson of Nationwide Children’s Hospital, says that carefully monitoring children from bipolar households may prompt early-testing and treatment for developing manic conditions. Dr. Axelson referred to the subtle signs as “a distinct period of a mood change where they might be excessively happy and or angry or explosively irritable beyond what you would expect.”
As research scientists continue to look for early indicators of manic depressive disorder, therapists here at Perspectives Of Troy work to improve the lives of clients ongoingly. If you are in need of treatment for bipolar disorder, or any mood disorder, do not hesitate to reach out to us at 248.244.8644. Remember, “You Need Not Walk Alone”.