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Bipolar Mama

Welcome! Congratulations for seeking support. It is not easy living with Bipolar, seeking support, geting help, and just getting through your day.. thank you so much for visiting our site! I think you are in the right place. I started this site after reviewing what was out there on the internet for those seeking extra supports. I was seeking something different, maybe you are too. Join our community today and start reading what other users are sharing, or start your own discussion on our forum! Together, we can get through the highs, lows, peaks, and trenches of bipolar. 


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The More You Know- Genetics

Possible Genetic Causes of Bipolar Disorder

Over the historical course of bipolar research, scientists have mostly concluded that bipolar disorder is an inherited disease. The data shows that the following aspects of bipolar run in families:

  • Same history of psychiatric hospitalizations

  • Bipolar and obsessive-compulsive disorder occurring together in individuals

  • Same approximate age of onset

  • Same approximate number of episodes characterized by mania

  • Same approximate frequency of manic episodes

  • When one twin has bipolar disorder, the other twin has a 70% chance of having it.

  • With one parent having bipolar, the chances of the child having it goes up 10-15%, but with both parents having it, the child's chances are 30-40%.

With these familial similarities in mind, scientists have been looking for exact genetic markers that always show up when someone has bipolar disorder. A genetic marker is simply a gene that has a known location on DNA and can be used to identify inheritable traits. While no specific gene stands out so far as the one that always causes bipolar, the following genomic variants each have been identified in groups of people who have the disease.

  • CACNA1C - SNP at rs1006737 - The CACNA1C affects the calcium channel. It is a large gene that has many variants, but the rs1006737 has been associated with bipolar disorder. The results did not hold up under repeated studies. A note of interest: other studies have shown that genetic variants that affect activity within the calcium channel are associated with psychiatric disorders.

  • NCAN - neurocan - NCAN is another large gene. It affects a large secreted protein found in certain parts of the brain. It is involved in several tasks at the cellular level. While scientists have studied this gene about bipolar and other psychiatric disorders, they haven't identified any clear correlation.

  • ODZ4 - rs12576775 - The rs12576775 variant of the ODZ4 gene has shown promise as an identifying factor for bipolar disorder. However, the variant is also present in several other disorders, including autism spectrum, ADHD, major depression, and schizophrenia. More studies are needed to find out what the factors are that make the difference between all these disorders.

Currently, tests available online are promoted as answers to the question of whether you have bipolar. At this time, there is no scientific evidence that these tests do any such thing. They do identify whether you have a specific gene, but that gene may or may not find expression in bipolar or any other psychiatric disorder.

Source- https://www.betterhelp.com/advice/bipolar/causes-of-bipolar-disorder-and-what-to-do-about-it/?utm_source=AdWords&utm_medium=Search_PPC_m&utm_term=_&utm_content=88831678748&network=g&placement=&target=&matchtype=&utm_campaign=6459244691&ad_type=text&adposition=&gclid=CjwKCAiAh_GNBhAHEiwAjOh3ZFFhOqd5NPymVXgZ-ODZMqVyoy2CgbnqqDP7TLEvBUpuUOjLPGou2BoCUi8QAvD_BwE

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What’s Trending? Cause of Bipolar

Possible Biological Bipolar Disorder Causes

Scientists who study the biological causes of psychiatric disorders assume that they are caused not only by genetic variations but also by brain chemistry and structure. In short, they see the biological roots of the disease as a genetic predisposition as acted on by the forces of nature. It's still unclear how much is determined by the genes and how much by what happens to the person through their lifetime. However, researchers have identified the following associations between biological differences and the presence of bipolar disorder.

Neurotransmitter Dysfunction

Neurotransmitters are the chemical substances that carry messages within the brain. They include serotonin and norepinephrine, among others. When these neurotransmitters aren't functioning properly, they can lead to the onset of bipolar disorder.

Onset or Flare of Certain Medical Conditions

A few medical conditions have been closely associated with bipolar disorder. People who have these conditions are much more likely to be diagnosed with bipolar disorder. For example, bipolar seems to precede or occur simultaneously with multiple sclerosis in a significant percentage of people with MS. Another disorder that seems to be preceded by bipolar disorder is Cushing's syndrome. Cushing's is a metabolic disorder that also features high blood pressure and obesity.

Hormonal Changes

Hormonal changes, such as those following pregnancy may also be associated with the onset of bipolar disorder.

Environmental Causes/Triggers for Onset and Relapse

With the genetic and biological causes of bipolar in place, a trigger is usually the tipping point between predisposition and having the disorder. The triggers known at this point come from the environment and the lifestyle choices each person makes.

Alcohol or Drug Use

Alcohol and drug use are not what causes bipolar disorder, but they can cause a relapse or make the condition worse. Depressions are usually much more severe for those who use these substances. Drug use can trigger a depression or manic episode as well.

Major Losses

When faced with a major loss, many people have problems with their mood. Depression has been so closely associated with the grieving process that Marian Kubler-Ross identified it as one of the 5 Stages of Grief. However, mania, too, can follow a loss as the person tries frantically to replace what they no longer have. Grieving can cause people to change their habits and alter their lifestyle in ways that make them more vulnerable to bipolar as well as a variety of other medical and psychiatric conditions.

Other Life Stressors

People often develop a variety of health problems when they're under extreme stress. Medical conditions such as gastrointestinal disorders may come along soon after life stressors increase dramatically. In the same way, stressors can trigger the onset, relapse, or worsening of bipolar disorder. A stressful job, dealing with a bitter divorce, or taking on too many responsibilities are just a few of the stressors that can bring on this psychiatric condition.

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The types and doses of medications prescribed are based on your particular symptoms. Whether you have bipolar I or II, medications may include:

  • Mood stabilizers.

     You'll typically need mood-stabilizing medication to control episodes of mania or hypomania, which is a less severe form of mania. Examples of mood stabilizers include lithium (Lithobid), valproic acid (Depakene), divalproex sodium (Depakote), carbamazepine (Tegretol, Equetro, others) and lamotrigine (Lamictal).

  • Antipsychotics.

     Your psychiatric care provider may add an antipsychotic medication such as olanzapine (Zyprexa), risperidone (Risperdal), quetiapine (Seroquel), aripiprazole (Abilify), ziprasidone (Geodon), lurasidone (Latuda), cariprazine (Vraylar) or asenapine (Saphris). Your provider may prescribe some of these medications alone or along with a mood stabilizer.

  • Antidepressants.

     Your provider may add an antidepressant or one of the other medications used to treat bipolar disorder that has antidepressant effects to help manage depression. Because an antidepressant can sometimes trigger a manic episode, it needs to be prescribed along with a mood stabilizer or antipsychotic in bipolar disorder.

  • Antidepressant-antipsychotic.

     The medication Symbyax combines the antidepressant fluoxetine and the antipsychotic olanzapine. It works as a depression treatment and a mood stabilizer. Symbyax is approved by the Food and Drug Administration specifically for the treatment of depressive episodes associated with bipolar I disorder.

In addition to medication for bipolar disorder, other treatment approaches include:

  • Psychotherapy.

     As a key part of treatment, your psychiatric care provider may recommend cognitive behavioral therapy to identify unhealthy, negative beliefs and behaviors and replace them with healthy, positive ones. Other types of therapy also may help, such as social rhythm therapy — establishing a consistent routine for better mood management.

  • Substance abuse treatment.

     Many people with bipolar disorder also have alcohol, tobacco or drug problems. Drugs or alcohol may seem to ease symptoms, but they can actually trigger, prolong or worsen depression or mania. If you have a problem with alcohol or other drugs, tell your provider so that both your substance use and bipolar disorder can be treated.

  • Treatment programs.

     Participation in an outpatient treatment program for bipolar disorder can be very beneficial. However, your provider may recommend hospitalization if your bipolar disorder significantly affects your functioning or safety.

  • Self-management strategies.

     In addition to medications and other types of treatment, successful management of your bipolar disorder includes living a healthy lifestyle, such as getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet and being physically active. Keeping to a regular schedule, getting involved in social activities and joining a support group may also help. If you need advice in these areas, talk with your provider.

You may need to try different medications or combinations of medications to determine what works best. So it's important to regularly meet with your psychiatric care provider to see how well your treatment is working. If necessary, your provider may make periodic adjustments to your medication to keep symptoms and side effects under control.



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