Depression - the word evokes images of some typical behavior and attitude that deviates from the normal personality of a person. Call it a nemesis of this modern world, that besides physical ailments, mental illnesses have grown drastically. This has eventually given birth to several different branches of psychotherapy and psychoanalysis for treatment of bipolar disorder.
The term depression, or more aptly, bipolar depression has been researched by psychologists since hundreds of years, and still, there is no perfect method of its test. The truth is, it's very difficult to come up with some medical procedure or diagnosis method that can conclude depression cases. The reason being, every individual and his past medical history of depression are very different, almost contrary in many cases. Hence, it's not a cake walk to design some ideal test for manic depression. Nonetheless, expert psychologists have tried to develop some tests that can at least hint towards some signs of bipolar depression, which can help people to be diagnosed with this medical condition.
As mentioned earlier, it is very difficult to know if one has this disorder. However, you can analyze your situation yourself. You can observe your attitude, your behavior, and your reactions against situations in life, for over few weeks. For instance, analyze if you have been going through series of elevated mood swings since many months. That is, the duration and intensity of your mood swings fluctuate drastically.
Now, we all have mood swings, which are normal, however, in cases of bipolar depression, mood swings are often accompanied by deep sense of irritability or high levels of excitement. Recording the times you've been on highs and lows of mood swings can be a glimpse of this test that you can carry out on your own. Individuals doing this need to be very unbiased about their situation, that is, they've to observe their own behavior with full honesty.Some other signs of this disorder are increased and heightened levels of energy, extremely low and lethargic state of mind, poor concentration and focus, low sex drive or extreme high sex drive, and violent behavior.
Test and Treatment
Firstly, people who've been experiencing the symptoms of this depression must not hesitate to take help from expert counselors. This is due to the fact that proper counseling can help an individual to gain insight about various thought patterns and mood swings they go through, in different situations. This can help such individuals to have better control over their thoughts.
The American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV; 1994), enlists various methods for this test. One of them is the beck depression test. More commonly known as Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), it measures the severity of bipolar depression based on results of clinical depression tests. It is a standard method used in evaluation of bipolar disorder treatment. It is generally advised to go through this therapy under expert guidance, as it is often difficult for the layman to comprehend various clinical terms and their results.
Some other tests and treatment options include various factors, like interpersonal therapy, cognitive behavior therapy, and psychoanalytical oriented therapy. Using these therapies, experts analyze a patient's situation. This is why it's extremely necessary to go for this test under the surveillance of an expert, as they can help in understanding complications in a better way.
It is to be remembered that there can be various changes in other disorder tests, depending on respective cases. Bipolar depression is not something that can't be treated. In fact, as awareness and sensitivity about this mental illness has increased, possibilities of a patient's betterment have increased. The only thing is that the patient must get right treatment and support from family and friends.
Disclaimer: This article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.