What are Mood Swings?
If you experience sudden and frequent changes in mood, which starts to harm your life, you may have a mental health problem. Emotional swings from one extreme to another can be a normal part of life, but if they are persistent and affect your day-to-day activities, seeking help is essential.
Changes in hormones or another health issue could cause your changing emotions. In the most dire circumstances, frequent and acute mood swings could signal a mental health disorder such as bipolar disorder (previously called manic depression) or cyclothymia, a less intense condition.
It is recommended to consult a doctor if you experience frequent and sudden shifts in your mood.
Symptoms of Mood Swings
When you suffer from frequent and severe mood swings, it may be indicative of an underlying condition, such as bipolar disorder.
It would be best to watch for symptoms such as going from extreme highs to extreme lows frequently over a short period. Signs it could be bipolar disorder include:
- During a high or manic period, a person may feel overwhelming joy, energy, and confidence. They may have difficulty sleeping, as well as experience hallucinations or delusions. Additionally, people in a manic state may be more likely to make impulsive decisions, such as spending large amounts of money or engaging in dangerous activities.
- During a low or depressive episode, you may experience various emotions, such as sadness, hopelessness, insecurity, frustration, and even suicidal ideation. You may also feel fatigued, struggle to concentrate, and have trouble sleeping.
It is possible for people with bipolar disorder to experience periods of stability with no manic or depressive symptoms, although the frequency of the episodes can differ from one person to another.
When to see a doctor
Experiencing any of these symptoms can disrupt your daily life, and it is essential to get professional assistance to receive the proper care.
The doctor will query you regarding the duration and frequency of your symptoms and any medical history you or your family may have. They will also inquire into how the symptoms are affecting your daily life.
Before the doctor can refer you to a specialist for diagnosis, they will need to check for any other conditions that may be causing your symptoms, such as a problem with your thyroid. Once any other states have been ruled out, the specialist can work with you to diagnose your condition.
Treatment for Mood Swings
Although there is no definitive way to eliminate bipolar disorder and mood swings permanently, various treatments can be employed to help control them. These treatments can reduce the intensity and frequency of manic or depressive episodes, relieving those afflicted.
Combining medication, therapy, and self-help techniques can benefit those with the condition, as it can help control mood swings and allow them to recognise the warning signs of an episode. Taking action to address the symptoms can help to manage the condition.
To help manage the condition, it is recommended to incorporate regular exercise, maintain a wholesome diet, and get a sufficient amount of restful sleep into one's daily routine.
Your specialist will work with you to find a treatment plan that is a good fit for you. You may need to try a few treatments before finding the one that works. Possible treatments include:
- To prevent mood swings, mood stabilisers are prescribed
- Manic episodes and medication
- Antidepressant medications
- The use of talking therapies, such as cognitive behavior therapy (CBT), can be beneficial.
- Treatment in a hospital is usually recommended only in severe cases or under the Mental Health Act.
Causes of Mood Swings
The exact cause of mood swings and bipolar disorder remains unclear. Many experts believe it could be related to biological, psychological, and environmental factors.
Mood swings more frequently or intensely than usual can indicate a mental health issue. Mental health disorders such as bipolar disorder usually begin during the late teens or early 20s, with at least half of all cases developing before age 25. Triggers such as prolonged or intense stress, major life events, or childhood trauma can contribute to the development of bipolar disorder.
It is believed that bipolar disorder has a genetic component, as the condition often appears to run in families. Changes in the brain's biochemistry can also be responsible for the onset of the disorder.
How Mobi Doctor can help
Mobi Doctor allows you to consult with a doctor from the comfort of your home. You can arrange a video consultation at a time and place that suits you. Our doctors will strive to understand how your mood swings impact your life and offer helpful advice.
If appropriate, your doctor may direct you to a specialist for further evaluation and a diagnosis. The specialist will collaborate with you to devise a treatment plan to minimise your condition's effects as much as possible.
Connect with one of our doctors at Mobi Doctor with the click of a button and receive the care you require.