Manic depression, also known as bipolar disorder, can lead an individual through complicated and overwhelming emotions that sometimes lead to self-destructive behavior.
Self-injury and risky decision making can make bipolar disorder dangerous to your health and your life, but there is help available.
Bipolar Disorder Can Take Over Your Life if Left Untreated
Bipolar disorder is the clinical name for manic depression. Bipolar disorder causes episodes of mania followed by episodes of deep depression. Mania can affect your life by causing the following:
- Intense euphoria that may feel good at first but can lead to exhaustion
- An increase in impulsive or poor decision making
- An inability to pay attention to important details even when doing things like driving a car or working
- Swings of intense happiness or intense anger that can change quickly
Depression can affect your life by causing the following:
- Hopelessness and distress
- Relationship, work and friendship problems
- Suicidal ideation or feelings that make you want to give up
It is easy to see how bipolar disorder or manic depression can get out of control quickly.
Bipolar Disorder and Destructive Decision Making
Manic depression causes an overwhelming rush of emotions that make logical decision making difficult. As long as bipolar disorder is untreated, there is a risk of making destructive decisions.
A moment of anger can cause a violent rage that is out of character. A week of severe depression can lead a person to quit his or her job, cut ties with friends or family or make other poor decisions.
Mania may lead to an increase in drug or alcohol use, extramarital affairs, impulsive spending and driving and other destructive decisions.
Bipolar Disorder and Self-Injury
The intense feelings of bipolar disorder often lead manic depressive people to seek relief by any means necessary. Some people struggle to cope and end up harming themselves to feel some relief. Without thinking about the consequences, some bipolar people cut or burn themselves to inflict pain and injury. Self-harm is more common among bipolar people than the general population. In some situations self-harm can lead to accidental suicide or serious injury.