Different Types of Bipolar Disorder


Before, I used to think that there was only one kind of Bipolar Disorder. Little did I know that this was such a complex personality disorder that doctors had to categorize it.

The main benefit of knowing the different types of bipolar disorder is so psychiatrists may properly address with the right treatment plan and medication. Otherwise, bipolar disorder could become worse.

Different Types of Bipolar Disorder


1. Bipolar I Disorder – also known as manic depression means that a person had at least 1 manic episode in his life. Manic Depression is defined as an abnormally elevated mood alongside high energy that usually produces disruptive behavior.

Symptoms of Bipolar I Disorder:

a. Loud and fast talking
b. Jumping from one idea to the other
c. Hyperactivity
d. Hypersexuality
e. Substance abuse
f. Impulsive Spending
g. Inflated Self-Image

2. Bipolar II Disorder – this kind of bipolar disorder is just like bipolar I but with cycling moods from high to low. The difference is that the mania episodes in bipolar II is not as intense as bipolar I.

Symptoms of Bipolar II Disorder:

a. Decreased need for sleep because of excessive energy
b. Jumping from one idea to the other
c. Loud and fast talking

3. Bipolar Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (NOS) – this type of bipolar disorder is often times confused with depression but is not at all the same thing.

Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder (NOS):

a. Slight melancholy
b. Social Phobia
c. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
d. Substance Dependence
e. Having a short fuse
f. Borderline Personality Traits

4. Cyclothymia – This is a relatively mild mood disorder and shows short periods of slight depression and hypomania. Thus, it isn’t as severe as Bipolar I and Bipolar II.

Symptoms of Cyclothymia:

a. Excessive physical activity
b. Short attention span
c. Easily distracted
d. Poor judgment resulting to bad decisions
e. Inflated self-esteem
f. Racing thoughts
g. Easily irritated
h. Talkativeness

5. Rapid Cycling – this is distinguished as patterns of distinct and frequent episodes of mania or depression. Basically, a person is considered to have a rapid cycle of bipolar if he or she has experienced more than four episodes of mania and depression in one year.

Symptoms of Rapid Cycling Bipolar:

a. Recurrent episodes of depression or major depression reoccurring within one year

There are a lot of people who aren’t aware of the different types of bipolar. Yet, it’s very important. You can never treat Bipolar without knowing the right type a person is experiencing. Some types can be terribly disabling while some are tolerable. Just remember three things in determining the bipolar type – intensity, interference with life and length.