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What Are the Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder in Teens?

symptoms of bipolar disorder in teens

Bipolar disorder is a serious mental health condition with severe consequences if left untreated. If your teen exhibits symptoms of this disorder, getting them to help immediately is important. Early treatment can reduce the severity of symptoms and prevent future problems such as substance misuse, accidents, or self-harm.

The symptoms of bipolar disorder in teens can be tumultuous for young people and their families. Thankfully, you do not have to manage this condition on your own. Imagine Seattle can help your child find greater peace amidst the drastic ups and downs of bipolar disorder. Call us today at 888.346.0473 to learn more about our bipolar disorder therapy program for children aged 12 to 17.

Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder in Teens

It can be difficult to know when a teen is experiencing bipolar disorder since some symptoms can be mistaken for typical teen angst and moodiness. Here are some signs you may notice if your teen is struggling with bipolar disorder:

  • Irritability
  • Impulsiveness
  • Moodiness
  • Sudden shifts in energy
  • Drastic changes in sleeping patterns
  • Depression
  • Anxiety

If your teen is showing some of these signs, it is best to schedule an assessment to get a proper diagnosis. They may be dealing with bipolar disorder or another mental health condition that can interfere with their everyday life. Getting the right diagnosis and treatments can make their teen years happier and more successful.

Examples of Behaviors in Teens with Bipolar Disorder

Teenagers are known for being moody, sullen, and unwilling to talk with their parents about their problems. But what if the problem is more than the usual teen issues? They could struggle with bipolar disorder, a mental health condition that can lead to extreme emotional ups and downs. Some examples of behaviors in teens with bipolar disorder include:

  • Flying into sudden rages or becoming irritable when they do not get what they want
  • Being impulsive and doing things that are not safe, such as speeding or running through stop signs or red lights while driving
  • Becoming hyperactive and trying to accomplish everything all at once or becoming sluggish and lethargic, possibly falling asleep in class
  • Seeming excited and happy one moment, then depressed and moody the next

As you can imagine, dealing with bipolar disorder as a teen can make this challenging stage in life even more difficult to manage.

How Can You Help a Teen with Bipolar Disorder?

Treatment can help teens with bipolar disorder get better, feel better, and function better. It is important to help your child get treatment immediately if you spot symptoms of bipolar disorder. Professional treatment can help them manage their fluctuating moods, so they feel more stable. It can also prevent symptoms from getting worse.

Your child will likely need a comprehensive approach to treatment to help get bipolar disorder under control. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) can help your teen work through depression and anxiety. Their therapist can also teach them how to manage manic and depressive episodes so they are less disruptive to their daily life. Medication may also be part of your child’s treatment to help stabilize their mood.

Imagine Seattle: Therapy for Teens with Bipolar Disorder

The manic highs and depressive lows of bipolar disorder can be unsettling for teens and their parents. The most important thing to remember about bipolar disorder in teens is that it can be treated, and the sooner you get help, the better. If your child is showing symptoms of this condition, reach out to Imagine Seattle at 888.346.0473. Our bipolar disorder therapy program for teens will provide them with the right blend of medication, therapy, and support so they can learn how to stop it from running their life.