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How many years before being diagnosed with bipolar?

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Gratefultobewell

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Mar 4, 2021
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I’m interested to know how many years you had symptoms before being diagnosed bipolar. What finally happened before the diagnosis? I think I had symptoms, mostly depression when I was in high school, but wasn’t diagnosed with bipolar until I was in my 40s. I was working the night shift for several years which I think set off the mania which led into a years long depression and was finally diagnosed. In the end I’m glad I was diagnosed bipolar so I could get on the right medication.
 
Pink

Pink

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Sep 23, 2019
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I was diagnosed with psychosis 10 years ago. It took approximately 10 years for my diagnosis.
 
Zana

Zana

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A good 5 years of increasingly erratic behaviour and moods but the signs were there from at least teenage years.
 
M

MHFPokeplantz

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Feb 17, 2021
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Brazil
Isnt there a more specific test or analyzis that shortens the time?? Cause it would be better to treat right right away, as soon as possible
Some ppl are treated as Depression only and it often WORSENS the Mania or Bipolar symptoms. Sucks
 
Zana

Zana

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Apr 15, 2020
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England
Isnt there a more specific test or analyzis that shortens the time?? Cause it would be better to treat right right away, as soon as possible
Some ppl are treated as Depression only and it often WORSENS the Mania or Bipolar symptoms. Sucks
Sadly it's still not physiologically understood very well and it's unlikely that new patients will understand hypo/mania. Certainly hypomania might seem like just a great time so it wouldn't be reported, thus mainly the depressive symptoms get reported and thus they are treated for depression.

From my personal experience the fastest route to a diagnosis is to be data driven; keep a written journal and a numerical mood journal - both dated - and present this to your doctors.

Hopefully one day we'll understand the brain sufficiently to run diagnostic tests for bipolar but seldom with mental health issues is it that clear cut.
 
S

Saaaaad66

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Mar 14, 2021
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Coventry
I’m interested to know how many years you had symptoms before being diagnosed bipolar. What finally happened before the diagnosis? I think I had symptoms, mostly depression when I was in high school, but wasn’t diagnosed with bipolar until I was in my 40s. I was working the night shift for several years which I think set off the mania which led into a years long depression and was finally diagnosed. In the end I’m glad I was diagnosed bipolar so I could get on the right medication.
I was on antidepressants for years (about 20) was referred to anger management meetings, councillor, cognitive behavioural therapy, also on diazepam and various other sleep aids for insomnia. It was only at the age of 47 that I was finally referred to a psychiatrist who diagnosed me as being bipolar and put me on the appropriate meds. I sometimes wonder if my life would have taken a different path had I not felt so screwed up all the time
 
L

LadyDomino

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May 7, 2019
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526
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Dorset
I suspect I would have been diagnosed bipolar earlier but for my self medicating with alcohol. It wasn't until I got dry that it became apparent that I couldn't function "normally". However, in hindsight, there were clues of problems, both mania and depression going back to my childhood.
 
K

karma44771

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Mar 14, 2021
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deerfield, il
i was diagnosed bipolar II with mixed episodes at 27 (im 42 now) but treated for depression/anxiety for 10 years prior but was bipolar all along. i can remember having symptoms of bipolar at 3 years old.
 

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