Bipolar II Disorder

Bipolar II disorder is characterized by the presence of a major depressive episode lasting two weeks or more, along with at least one hypomanic episode. Hypomania is a milder form of elevated mood compared to full-blown mania, lasting a minimum of four consecutive days. Symptoms include increased energy, pressured speech, and occasionally agitation. While the intensity of mania in Bipolar II disorder is less severe than in Bipolar I disorder, depressive episodes tend to be severe and may persist for extended periods.

Individuals with Bipolar II disorder typically do not experience manic episodes severe enough to necessitate hospitalization. Hypomanic symptoms generally do not result in significant impairment in daily functioning, nor do they typically lead to the severe problems often associated with manic symptoms, such as hospitalization or substantial impairment.

Bipolar Disorder (1 and 2) and overall Health

  • Bipolar DO results in 9.2 years reduction in life expectancy.
  • Bipolar DO carries a high risk of suicide with some studies showing 30% of those with Bipolar DO will attempt suicide at one point in their lives
  • The suicide rate is twenty times greater than the general population.
  • Some studies show 15-20% of those with bipolar disorder will commit suicide (1 in 4 suicides may be linked to an individual with Bipolar DO).
  • Many report co-occurring health conditions, which are commonly high cholesterol, migraine, high blood pressure and asthma.
  • Unfortunately, bipolar disorder is left untreated in half of the diagnosed individuals in any given year.
  • On average, patients will have waited nearly 10 years from their first bipolar mood episode to the time they receive a mood-stabilizing treatment specifically for bipolar disorder.


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