What Are Some Differences Between Bipolar Disorder and Manic Depression?


Quick Answer

There is no difference between bipolar disorder and manic depression, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. They are two terms for the same mental illness; bipolar disorder is the medical term used in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, also known as the DSM.

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Full Answer

Bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression, is characterized by significant changes in mood, energy and activity levels that results in an impaired ability to function in everyday life, explains the National Institute of Mental Health. There are four types of bipolar disorder: bipolar I disorder, bipolar II disorder, bipolar disorder not otherwise specified and cyclothymic disorder.

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