A mental health problem that affects as many as 51 million people around the world at any given time but what are the causes of bipolar disorder?
The symptoms can vary in severity but include at least one period of full on mania or hypomania, feeling euphoric, energetic and prone to poor or risky behavior giving way to periods of depression. Either of these periods can last for weeks or months. We’ve covered the details of what the disorder looks like, now lets look at what’s making it happen.
Where Does it Come From?
So what are the causes of bipolar disorder?
No one is sure and that’s not a failing of medicine or science. Despite all the things we know about the mind and body, we are still made of countless interacting pieces and systems. Nailing down the exact reason one person suffers drastic mood swings is more complicated than any one would like it to be.
There’s no shortage of interesting and encouraging research into bipolar disorder. We’ve learned a lot and it’s generated some promising research.
Here are a few of those areas:
One of the causes of bipolar disorder depends on your family. You’re more likely to show symptoms if one of your relatives has it. In one study 41 families with a history showed 164 rare forms of genes likely to appear in people with BPD
An imbalance in neurotransmitters such as noradrenaline, serotonin and dopamine levels in the brain is researched as one of the causes of bipolar disorder. These imbalances can lead to emotional confusion and extreme choices.
Another one of the areas looked at as one of the causes of bipolar disorder, internal physical differences. Studies have shown that people experiencing bipolar personality disorder have different brain sizes compared those who don’t. The size can change along with mood. There is less volume of total grey and white matter and more volume of cerebrospinal fluid in those with it.
-The Dysbindin, Neuregulin, and G72 genes show signs of damage in people who exhibit bipolar traits but estimates put the total amount of genes that would be involved in expressing the disease at somewhere between 50 and 100.
Causes of Bipolar Disorder Episodes
Aside from the physical root causes of bipolar disorder, it’s also worth considering the external triggers that can make episodes worse. Even if you have never had it, it’s good to know what can bring on an episode in someone else.
These triggers include:
-Lack of sleep.
-Stress, particularly stressful arguments.
-Changes in seasons
Any one of these can bring on a manic mood or a depressed one.
Living with bipolar disorder isn’t easy. The more we learn about it and the details of the minds functions at all, the better off we will all be.
That’s all for this week. Check back next Tuesday for more health and fitness.