Symptoms of manic depression include a combination of depression and high energy. Moods can shift rapidly, and during a depressive phase, sadness, hopelessness, irritability, fatigue and difficulty concentrating are common. Whereas mania phases of manic depression are best described as an intense euphoric state accompanied by heightened self-confidence.
Manic depression is a serious mental condition. And since major depression is a common sign, thoughts of suicide can develop if left untreated. Likewise, lack of good judgment and dangerous behavior are common during manic phases, when sufferers often take part in reckless activities.
Different factors trigger bipolar or manic depression. These include a family history of mental illness and a major life change such as dealing with a chronic illness or losing a loved one.
Manic depression is a chronic condition that requires long-term treatment. There is no cure for this type of depression. But with medication and psychotherapy, there are ways to manage symptoms and resume normal activities. Typical drugs used to treat manic depression include antidepressants and anti-psychotic medications.
According to the Mayo Clinic, alcohol and the misuse of drugs can bring on manic depression or worsen an episode.
Mental illnesses are common and, according to eMedicine Health, approximately 5.7 million people suffer from manic depression (bipolar disorder) in the United States. There's no cure for manic depression. But with treatment, you can control mood swings.