Bipolar Disorder

Child, Adolescent, and Adult Psychiatry located in Portland, OR

Telehealth and in-office appointments available.
Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder has no cure and should always be considered a severe mental health disorder. You can learn to manage your condition successfully with expert help from Berhanu Bedassa, PMHNP, at Bridge of Hope Mental Health Services in Portland, Oregon. Berhanu offers complete care to people of all ages living with this incurable mental illness. Call Bridge of Hope Mental Health Services or schedule a consultation online today for skilled, compassionate bipolar disorder treatment.

Bipolar Disorder Q & A

What is bipolar disorder?

The symptom that defines bipolar disorder is mood switches between mania and depression. Manic episodes feature:

  • Hyperactivity (endless energy)
  • Overconfidence
  • Excitability
  • Little need for sleep
  • Talking fast and loud
  • Risk-taking behaviors
  • Excessive spending
  • Agitation
  • Irritability
  • Racing thoughts
  • Feeling invulnerable

During a manic episode, you might behave very differently from your usual self. The activities you do when manic can also worsen the depression that inevitably follows. For example, you might ring up unmanageable debt, get into a fight, or contract a sexually transmitted disease (STD). The shame and guilt you experience after mania feeds your depression.

As depression sets in, you feel increasingly hopeless, miserable, and worthless. You lack energy, retreat into your own world, and might care little about your appearance. Some people struggle to sleep; others sleep to excess. You might lose your appetite or start binge eating. Everyone’s experience of bipolar disorder is unique.

How severe is bipolar disorder?

Bipolar disorder has three primary forms that differ in how severely they affect people:


Bipolar I disorder

This form of bipolar is the most severe. You experience extreme mood swings, with depression so profound you struggle to get out of bed, care for yourself, or communicate.

Some people also suffer from psychosis, experiencing hallucinations and delusions. Hallucinations involve seeing or hearing what isn’t there, like someone talking to you. Delusions are beliefs that you can’t recognize are false.


Bipolar II disorder

People with bipolar II disorder have depression as severe as bipolar I. But their mania is less extreme.



This form of bipolar disorder is less disabling, with more predictable and manageable symptoms. But it can still significantly affect your quality of life.

What treatments help with bipolar disorder?

Berhanu recommends a combination of medication and psychotherapy (talk therapy or counseling). Medications can include antidepressants and mood stabilizers. If you suffer from hallucinations and delusions, you might also need antipsychotics.

Several forms of talk therapy can help with bipolar disorder. You might benefit from discussing the challenges you face each day and getting guidance on coping with them. Berhanu also enables you to understand your condition.

Call Bridge of Hope Mental Health Services or book an appointment online today to arrange a thorough bipolar disorder evaluation.