Recognizing the Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder in Children and How to Handle It

Although it may be rarely heard, but bipolar disorder in children can occur. This condition is important to be treated as early as possible, because it can affect the growth and development. Therefore, let's understand the symptoms of bipolar disorder in children and how to deal with them.

Bipolar disorder is characterized by changes in mood drastic changes, sleep patterns, and thinking skills. This disorder is more common in adulthood. But in some cases, bipolar can also appear in children and adolescents.

Until now, the exact cause of the onset of bipolar in children is not known with certainty. Hereditary factors and abnormalities in the structure of the child's brain are thought to play a role in increasing the risk of developing bipolar in children.

Characteristics of Bipolar Disorder in Children

In general, children who suffer from bipolar disorder will experience two psychological phases in their daily lives, namely the manic phase (joyful) and the depressive phase (sad). This makes him sometimes look very happy, active, have a lot of ideas, but suddenly become very sad, reluctant to do activities, and even shut himself up.

A bipolar child who is in a manic phase may behave in the following ways:

  • Looks like he's more energetic than usual.
  • Behave aggressively and impatiently.
  • Don't want to sleep.
  • Speak quickly.
  • It's hard to concentrate.
  • Feeling that he is more important than others around him.

While the depressive phase in children with bipolar can be characterized by several symptoms or behavioral changes, such as:

  • Looks tired, lethargic, lacks energy, and loses interest in activities.
  • Difficulty concentrating on studying which results in decreased achievement in school.
  • Feeling sad, worried, anxious, and more irritable.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • There was a desire to commit suicide.

The transition between manic and depressive phases in a bipolar child can occur within a day, or even over and over again. Between the two phases or often called the transition period, your little one can behave normally as usual.

If behavior changes occur quickly, some parents may think of it as mood swings. However, the existence of a phase when your child behaves normally, followed by a drastic difference between the manic and depressive phases is the key for you as a parent to recognize the possibility of bipolar disorder in your child.

Handling Bipolar Disorder in Children

Treatment of bipolar disorder in children aims to reduce symptoms and stabilize mood child. Handling is not only carried out by psychiatrists, but also parents, family members, as well as teachers and other people who often interact with the Little One.

There are two methods of treating bipolar disorder in children that can be done, namely through drugs and psychotherapy.

Medication is given to stabilize mood child. As a parent, you have to make sure that your little one takes their medicine regularly. While psychotherapy is done to help the child understand his condition, the emotional changes he will experience, and teach him communication techniques when experiencing a bipolar episode.

Children with bipolar disorder require long-term treatment. Get to know the early symptoms that children with bipolar disorder can experience and the treatment options that can be done, if you are confused, take advantage of the child psychology consultation services at the hospital. Early recognition and proper treatment will help children to continue to do activities like other children.