Schizophrenia Bipolar Disorder

Schizophrenia bipolar disorder is a topic of dispute among the researchers. As these common mental illnesses have similar genetic causes and they also have some common symptoms, some researchers suggest that these disorders need not be considered and diagnosed as distinct.

About bipolar disorder

Bipolar disorder is a chronic type mental illness characterized by extreme mood swings in a person’s behavior, kind of a combination of melancholia and mania. There can be extreme mood episodes in a particular pattern which is detrimental to the person’s social, professional and personal life. The ‘up’ mental state is known as mania and the ‘low’ mental state is known as depression. There is also a moderate manic stage known as hypomania and a moderate depressive stage termed as cyclothymia.

About schizophrenia

schizophrenia bipolar disorder

Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by disintegration of thought process and of emotional sensitivity. It is typically apparent in a schizophrenic patient to experience auditory hallucinations, paranoid or peculiar delusions, or else disorganized speech and thinking, and it is accompanied by considerable social or occupational performance. The onset of symptoms normally occurs in the early adulthood, with a global lifetime dominance of about 0.3 to 0.7%.

A study on Schizophrenia bipolar disorder

A study, funded by the Swedish Council for Working Life, Social Research and Swedish Research Council, was carried out at Karolinska Institute says that the two metal illnesses – schizophrenia and bipolar disorder – have the same genetic causes and thus should not be classified as distinct.

A Swedish scientist analyzed the records of about two million families, which include 35,985 patients suffering from schizophrenia, around 40,487 patients suffering from bipolar disorder, and even the blood relatives of both.

The result of this study shows that members with a family history of either bipolar disorder or schizophrenia are prone to an increased risk of developing a similar condition. The study focused only on risk factors associated with genetics, omitting the environmental and external factors that also cause these mental disorders.

Difference between Schizophrenia bipolar disorder

As bipolar disorder is one of the many brain diseases which have common symptoms with schizophrenia; a mistaken diagnoses, especially in children, is often observed in the patients.

It is important to understand that people with bipolar disorder, even those with psychotic symptoms – in case of bipolar disorder 1- as a feature of their illness, never meet the complete diagnostic criteria for schizophrenia. Someone suffering from bipolar disorder is not constantly in either a depressive or a manic phase; they may experience a long phase during which they seem to be virtually sans-symptom such as they may not have the disordered thinking, delusions, hallucinations, or other symptoms that typically characterize schizophrenia.

Similarly, whichever psychotic symptoms associated with bipolar disorder should occur within the context of a manic or a depressive episode – delusions of splendor and hallucinations may be either outrageously optimistic and pretentious, or completely devastating and guilt-ridden.

Although, there is an illness which encloses features of both schizophrenia and bipolar disorder and it is known as schizoaffective disorder; it can be explained as schizophrenia along with a mood component. The major distinguishing factor between schizoaffective and bipolar disorder 1 is that, in schizoaffective, the symptoms of schizophrenia such as the hallucinations and the delusions, etc should be manifested without accompanying any mood symptoms of mania or depression. As well, in a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, a person may not always be symptomatic, but in an episode symptoms similar to schizophrenia are in the context of mania or depression.

Schizophrenia bipolar disorder or any other mental illness must immediately be attended by an authorized psychiatrist and be given proper treatment to prevent any further damage which may leave a permanent mark on the person’s life.

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