Publisher: O'Reilly Media / Patient Centered Guides
Released: March 2002
Bipolar disorders are changes in the brain and nervous system that cause severe mood swings, from the deepest suicidal depression to the most elevated euphoria. Approximately 2 million adults in the US have a bipolar disorder, according to the latest figures from the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI). Worldwide prevalence hovers around 1 percent. Left untreated, bipolar disorders can plunge a person into absolute hell. Suicide is a possible outcome, as are school failure, limited job prospects, legal difficulties, and hospitalization. Families and communities pay a heavy toll when this disorder is not recognized and treated. Many traditional treatments, investigational medications, and complementary therapies can address symptoms and improve the lives of people with bipolar disorders. In some cases, the results are spectacular. Adult Bipolar Disorders: Understanding Your Diagnosis and Getting Help covers the range of topics that people need to know about in order to help themselves or a loved one:
Describes the range of bipolar disorders
Explains how to get a diagnosis, including descriptions of all diagnostic tests and checklists used by professionals
Dispels myths and misconceptions about this very misunderstood disease
Describes all medications, therapy, and other interventions, such as improving sleep patterns, preventing seasonal mood swings, diet, and supplements
Explores family life with bipolar disorders
Suggests ways to cope with diagnosis and treatment, including advice on support systems, insurance, and employment
Lists extensive resources
Author Mitzi Waltz, an advocate for adults and children with neurological disorders, has included the stories of dozens of people with bipolar disorders.
Mitzi Waltz is an advocate for families facing neurological issues. She has been heavily involved in online support work, and has also advocated for special-needs children within the medical, insurance, and education systems. She has written books on childhood/adolescent bipolar disorders, adult bipolar disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, partial seizures, and Tourettes syndrome. She is currently doing research at the Autism Research Unit in the UK.