Bipolar disorder characterizes a shifting personality between mania, times of complete happiness, to feeling of extreme depression. Bipolar disorder is hereditary, giving children who have parents with the disorder a higher risk for getting it themselves. It is not unusual to see a child or adolescent display the signs and symptoms of bipolar disorder from an early age; however, teen bipolar different than adults bipolar several key ways.
Teens who experience early -onset bipolar may exhibit more severe symptoms than an adult with the same condition. Their episodes of mania and depression are often more extreme than an adult and may have a great risk of suicide associated with it. Some physicians may misdiagnose early-onset bipolar disorder as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder because of the frequency of manic episodes. Teens will tend to go through the manic and depressive stages more often than an adult. Known as a mixed state, they will often go through a manic and depressive state within the same day.
If the teenager is on a medication regimen to treat their bipolar disorder, they may experience side effects that are different from those of an adult as well. Certain medication should be carefully monitored when taken by a teenager to ensure they are not causing damage to the developing body. Teen bipolar different than adults bipolar in many ways that are still being studied by experts in the profession.