People prefer living with extreme moods of bipolar disorder, say psychologists

Some people prefer to live with the extreme moods of bipolar disorder, clinical psychologists have acknowledged in a new report.

This is because the highs and lows associated with the disorder can be part of a continuum of one’s personality and can benefit people’s lives as well as causing problems, says the British Psychological Society report.

Biases in research have led to an exaggerated emphasis on the problems of bi-polar disorder at the expense of potential positive aspects, such as increased creativity, states the report.

People diagnosed with the disorder should also take a ‘try it and see’ approach to medication to find out if it is helpful or not, finds the report’s research, led by Lancaster University’s professor of clinical psychology, Steven Jones .

The report, Understanding Bipolar Disorder, will be seen as an attempt by the discipline of clinical psychology to distance itself from the orthodox bio-medical-model approach to bipolar disorder.

The psychologists state there is increasing evidence that psychological treatments (particularly cognitive behaviour therapy), and self-help can also be useful for bipolar disorder

Between one and two percent of the population have a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, previously known as manic depression.

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