Has anyone with a toddler with bipolar, and if so what is the their behavior, and symptoms like?

(March 24, 2010)

Bipolar disorder is a psychological problem that is often known as manic depression. As both these terms suggest, behavior in such individuals can be extreme. A person suffering from this disorder will have extreme happy moods, extreme depression phases and phases of normal behavior. Hence the term bipolar is used as the person’s behavior oscillates between two distinct moods.

The depressive phase can be extreme and involves feelings of sadness, guilt, loneliness, and a feeling of having no hope. Extreme cases may even lead to attempted suicide, which is why family members monitoring a bipolar patient should be aware of the mood and manage it accordingly.

Bipolar disorder can be treated medically. As bipolar episodes have been linked with a change in brain chemistry, certain medications, such as lithium are recommended. Treatment must be done after consulting a doctor and undergoing a full medical analysis. Bipolar disorder can affect toddlers as well. However, it is often not diagnosed as symptoms can be misread as indicators of other conditions or may also be ignored because they appear to be in the form of a tantrum or an outburst of anger. Because toddlers are unable to express their emotions, it is difficult to diagnose the condition. Early diagnosis is always better as it aids management of the problem.

Most of the symptoms described below for bipolar children overlap with other behavioral conditions and therefore one should rule out bipolar disorder before treating for any other disorder.

Bipolar toddlers may be extremely aggressive. Temper tantrums are not uncommon and they may be excessively long. Toddlers may be extremely defiant. They also show signs of destructiveness by breaking toys and even tearing their clothes. However, if you ignore your child’s tantrums, they may rapidly show signs of anxiety at being ignored or left alone.

Toddlers suffering from bipolar disorder may also show signs of extreme activity. Sometimes this is misinterpreted as an attention deficit disorder or as a sensory impairment. Both these diagnoses are possible as they would display the same symptoms. It is therefore necessary to test for all three before a conclusion is drawn.

Treatment for bipolar disorders can begin at a young age. It is not a condition that your child will grow out of. Family support and proper medication will lead to your child having a normal life, because bi polar disorders can be controlled easily. However, it is important to know the complications associated with medication. Certain medications react badly with alcohol and other drugs and this is an issue to take note of later in life for your child

Submitted by P T on March 24, 2010 at 01:17

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