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Bipolar Disorder and the Famous

Celebrities and bipolar disorder

Kurt Cobain - Bipolar MusicianKurt Cobain (1967-1994) American “Grunge” Musician – diagnosed with bipolar disorder and known drug abuse, suicide from self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.
Bipolar disorder can be a devastating disease.  Some people might also claim it is a gift in a sense.  There are a lot of famous people with bipolar disorder – and a lot more who are suspected of having it but have never been diagnosed – or just haven’t admitted it.

Kay Redfield Jamison is one of the most well-known people with bipolar disorder as she has been a pioneer in removing the stigma associated with the disease – and other mental health disorders.  Jamison is the author of the book Touched with Fire which has had resonance with people around the world, but she isn’t the only one.

People alive today that are known to have bipolar disorder

  •  Adam Ant (musician)
  • Russell Brand (comedian, actor)
  • Patricia Cornwell (author)
  • Richard Dreyfus (actor)
  • Patty Duke (actress)
  • Carrie Fisher (actress, author)
  • Mel Gibson (actor, director)
  • Linda Hamilton (actress)
  • Jesse Jackson Jr. (politician)
  • Margot Kidder (actress)
  • Debra LaFave (schoolteacher convicted for having sexual relations with student)
  • Jane Pauley (journalist)
  • Axl Rose (musician)
  • Britney Spears (singer-songwriter)
  • Ted Turner (media mogul)
  • Robin Williams (comedian, actor)
  • Catherine Zeta-Jones (actress)

Deceased

  • Kurt Cobain (musician, songwriter)
  • Ernest Hemingway (author)
  • Margeux Hemingway (actress, granddaughter of Ernest Hemingway)
  • Abbie Hoffman (activist)
  • Vivien Leigh (actress)
  • Marilyn Monroe (actress)
  • Sylvia Plath (poet)
  • Edgar Allan Poe (poet, author)
  • Jackson Pollock (artist)
  • Frank Sinatra (musician, actor)
  • Brian Wilson (musician)
  • Amy Winehouse (musician)
  • Virginia Woolf (writer)

This is only a short list of those who are known to have bipolar disorder as there are many more – and many more than that is suspect, including some who are alive today.  Mostly these are celebrities – known as bipolar only because they are famous.  We can guess who might have bipolar disorder through the news stories about repeated brushes with the law involving drug and alcohol abuse and bizarre behavior.  We can also look at the list of the deceased and see how many of those have died through suicide.

It seems that there are an abnormal amount of celebrities with bipolar disorder – or that more people with bipolar disorder are celebrities.  It is doubtful that either case is true, simply that the bipolar person is a “shiner” – usually amazing in their accomplishments at the best of times, and tremendously tragic at the worst of times.

In many cases, we learn of a famous case of bipolar disorder when a celebrity has a notorious (or repeated) encounter with the law – often involving alcohol or drug abuse.  Also in many cases, these encounters will continue until the person is diagnosed, incarcerated or dead – or a combination of these events.
Substance abuse and bipolar disorder often go hand-in-hand – whether this is because the person is self-medicating or because their brain tells them the rush is good.  Many people – not just celebrities “hide” behind substance abuse as an excuse for wild and unusual behavior.  Think of the celebrities who have gone on very public benders, breaking into houses, repeated visits to jail, long and dangerous rants in public, lewd and dangerous behavior.  This is not normal– even for a drunk.

It is a sad fact that substance abuse is more readily accepted today than a mental disorder – but it is.

Think about that the next time you hear of a celebrity doing something heinous – or a series of something’s heinous – or a celebrity committing suicide.

The Last 48 Hours of Kurt Cobain

Abuse, bizarre behavior and bipolar disorder often go hand-in-hand.

Diagnosis and Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is difficult to diagnose.

The average bipolar patient will see three mental health professionals before getting the right diagnosis. In fact, one-third of bipolar patients will not be diagnosed with the disorder until more than 10 years after they first seek treatment.

There is a lot of similarity between the symptoms of bipolar disorder and other psychiatric conditions, but that isn’t the only reason why it is so difficult to diagnose. Here are some of the complicating factors:

Bipolar Disorder PatientThe patient only talks about depression – as bipolar disorder is a condition that has periods of depression alternating with manic episodes, many patients present when they are depressed. This is particularly true when a patient seeks treatment for themselves. Manic patients feel good or at least energized and are unlikely to believe that anything is wrong. Either they feel terrific, or they are in a heightened “bad” mood – and likely to blame that on other people or life circumstances. Consequently when they first seek treatment – they only profess to the depression as that is most bothersome.

Bipolar disorder looks like anxiety – in actuality, many, if not most bipolar patients also have some type of anxiety disorder. Consequently it may be very difficult for mental health professional to root out bipolar disorder. If patients are seen as agitated, hyperactive or fidgety, they may be only asked about anxiety or given a self-rating scale for anxiety. This would immediately lead the practitioner to diagnose an anxiety disorder – unless careful investigations were done.

Substance abuse can be complicating the issue – many bipolar patients spend years self-treating with substances of abuse. This includes prescription medications, recreational drugs and alcohol. There is not any particular drug that is more often abused by bipolar people as a whole – some will choose alcohol, some will prefer stimulants, some will choose pain medications – all of which will mask the symptoms to some extent. In some cases, the substance abuse appears to be more problematic than anything else and in cases of addiction; the substance abuse must be treated before an accurate evaluation can occur.

Denial is very common – Denial is a nice way of saying dishonesty. That would be lying. This sounds very harsh but in many cases, bipolar patients will not be honest about difficulties that they have had. It may be subconscious dishonesty in that they, themselves do not really know what the problem is. Lack of awareness is common but outright denial is also common. Many bipolar patients absolutely refuse to accept the diagnosis when it is first presented – even after years of not being treated properly. Oddly, this may make it more likely that the practitioner believes that the patient has bipolar disorder but such outright denial delays treatment.

These are just a few of the reasons why bipolar disorder is so difficult to pin down and, unfortunately, delayed treatment can have huge life implicationsBipolar disorder is one of the riskiest psychiatric illnesses to have and can have severe consequences for the patient who is not properly diagnosed and medicated – including job losses, family disturbance, institutionalization, jail and even death.

Bipolar disorder affects not only the patient himself – but family and loved ones as well.

Why is it so difficult to diagnose bipolar disorder?

Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) – Additional Information

feeling-blueAdditional information to what is written on the page : “Menopause And Depression

Major depressive disorder (MDD)

(also known as recurrent depressive disorder, clinical depression, major depression, unipolar depression, or unipolar disorder) is a mental disorder characterized by an all-encompassing low mood accompanied by low self-esteem, and by loss of interest or pleasure in normally enjoyable activities.

This cluster of symptoms (syndrome) was named, described and classified as one of the mood disorders in the 1980 edition of the American Psychiatric Association’s diagnostic manual.
The term “depression” is ambiguous. It is often used to denote this syndrome but may refer to other mood disorders or to lower mood states lacking clinical significance.

Major depressive disorder is a disabling condition that adversely affects a person’s family, work or school life, sleeping and eating habits, and general health.
In the United States, around 3.4% of people with major depression commit suicide, and up to 60% of people who commit suicide had depression or another mood disorder.

Depression is a state of low mood and aversion to activity that can affect a person’s thoughts, behavior, feelings and physical well-being.
Depressed people may feel sad, anxious, empty, hopeless, worried, helpless, worthless, guilty, irritable, or restless.

They may lose interest in activities that once were pleasurable; experience loss of appetite or overeating, have problems concentrating, remembering details, or making decisions; and may contemplate or attempt suicide. Insomnia, excessive sleeping, fatigue, loss of energy, or aches, pains or digestive problems that are resistant to treatment may be present.

Teen Bipolar Disorder and Their Unique Challenges

Teen bipolar disorder is diagnosed more frequently.

bipolar-imagesBecause of the unique challenges, Teen bipolar disorder is diagnosed more frequently each year – as it should be. Manic depression is always a serious disorder, but when younger people are in the throes of the disease, it poses some additional challenges. Let us look at some of the unique problems of handling teen bipolar disorder.

First, we should probably take a moment to discuss what bipolar disorders are. In the simplest of terms, one is bipolar when they cycle between deep emotional lows and inappropriate emotional highs. Those who are bipolar experience periods of depression and, on the other end of the emotional spectrum, episodes of outright mania. Behavior on both ends is often potentially dangerous, and this illness can be exceptionally challenging for anyone.

Teen bipolar disorder refers to cases of the disorder diagnosed in young people.

Manic depression is difficult for any sufferer, but teens often have a more difficult time than others do. There are a few reasons.

First, the teen years are a period during which self-confidence is already often lacking. It is a trying period of self-discovery for emotionally healthy kids. There are those who try to take the gauntlet of issues, and learning experiences that are essential to the phase of life while simultaneously suffering from a debilitating mental health issue. This is not surprisingly, but can be quite traumatized by the experience.

This trauma is multiplied, in some sense, by the fact that younger people are yet to develop solid coping skills. Bipolar disorder can adversely affect even the most world-weary adult, but when it occurs with a younger person, they may be totally blindsided by its challenges.

Additionally, the nature of the age makes teen bipolar disorder more difficult for families and loved ones to spot the illness. Hormonal changes and social pressures often make teens “moody.” It can be hard for many parents to distinguish between manic depressive tendencies and traditional teen behavior. Catching the disease early in its development is always preferable, but when manic depression strikes a teenager, that can be extremely difficult.

Third, teen bipolar disorder takes place at a horrible time in terms of social development. Kids in this age group are involved with school, activities and socialization that can help them to learn how to function successfully as adults. That learning process can be short-circuited when a child is simultaneously dealing with manic depression.

Fortunately, teen bipolar disorder is treatable. Pharmaceutical and cognitive therapies can help bring the condition under control, allowing the victim to experience a tremendously improved quality of life. Successful treatment of the problem does require professional medical intervention. If one is, or knows, a teen who is exhibiting signs of a potential bipolar disorder, medical intervention is essential.

Although no mental health condition is “easy,” circumstances can create additional layers of challenge. Such is the case with teen bipolar disorder.

Bipolar teenager

 

 

 

The Bipolar Teen: What You Can Do to Help Your Child and Your Family

Bipolar Disorder and Social Media

Use Bipolar Chat as a Means of Support?

Bipolar disorder chatting online is currently the preferred option for the growing support for people suffering from bipolar disorder (sometimes known as manic depression).help

While bipolar chat option will not replace an appropriate treatment option recommended, everyone can provide some benefits for other bipolar people.

As the Internet has grown, the opportunity to interact with similar interests and conditions has increased.

Although we often assume that the social possibilities in terms of the fans to discuss their passions or professional exchange of ideas, it will also result in the creation of discussion groups and chat rooms for those suffering from certain diseases. The bipolar chat is an example of this phenomenon.

Despite a certain level of social development, mental illness still carries a stigma. Also, just based on symptoms, mental health problems can make people feel marginalized, and can stimulate ineffective separation. In discussing these issues with others in a supportive environment, some of the negative consequences can be minimized.

When there is someone to talk with, bipolar chat can allow victims of depression to feel less alone with their problem. It can help them realize that their struggle with the burden of this disease is not unique to them. This can reduce the feeling of being “out” and can give positive reinforcement as one continue to deal with the condition.

In some situations, bipolar chat may be one of the only real ways in how people can appraise significantly, and interact with other people who suffers from the disease. Those in rural areas or small towns cannot always have a “face to face” is an option, and then online bipolar chat can be extremely useful.

Others may feel uncomfortable with the “face” the situation and still be able to get some therapeutic value of bipolar disorder chat.

Although the online chat option can help, should not replace professional advice or therapy sessions prescribed. The support offered by a group chat can be brilliant but will allow coping skills, and information offered by the program receives professional treatment.

Nevertheless; we should not eliminate the need for bipolar chat medical use of drugs.

We must recognize that bipolar disorder is a hugely serious medical problem that requires professional medical assistance. Self-help in the form of a bipolar chat or other possibilities should be done only with the approval of a physician. In some cases, doctors may recommend that a person not involved in the effort and patients should pay attention to medical advice.

Advances in technology led to the creation of a valuable resource for those suffering from mental illness. An opportunity to share and learn from others with a similar analysis can be reassuring and helpful, which is the main reason for the growth of online opportunities such as bipolar disorder chat.