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Understanding key differences between bipolar disorder and premenstrual dysphoric disorder
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Understanding key differences between bipolar disorder and premenstrual dysphoric disorder It is quite natural to confuse between different types of mental disorders due to similarity or overlapping of the symptoms. It is also common to get confused between a mental condition and a mood disorder due to similar set of symptoms. This often leads to misdiagnosis of the problem, leading to other complications. One such case is that of bipolar disorder (BD), a mental illness, and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), a mood disorder. Though both the disorders affect a person’s mood and cause depression, it is essential to understand the key differences between them. While PMDD occurs due to fluctuations in reproductive hormones, BD (also known as manic-depressive illness) is a brain illness.

Unlike BD and other psychiatric disorders, PMDD is a premenstrual syndrome that causes irritability, tension and depression right before the menstrual cycle, in women. The condition was recently given an entry into the Diagnostic & Statistical Manual, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), a standard criteria used by clinicians and medical practitioners to diagnose and classify mental disorders. According to the American Psychological Association (APA), approximately 3 to 9 percent of women experience premenstrual changes that prevent people from managing their daily routine. Several experts have classified the condition of these women as PMDD. Besides these differences, it is crucial to understand other factors that distinguish PMDD from BD. Some of the key differences between BD and PMDD are as follows:

  • Duration: It is a well-established fact that BD can affect any individual at any point of time. It is not necessary that mood swings caused due to this condition would affect a person at a particular time or duration. On the contrary, PMDD is time-bound problem that develops within the week before the onset of monthly menses and disappears within the week following menses.
  • Symptoms: While the individuals dealing with these conditions may experience some common symptoms like mood swing, the intensity of symptoms like depression, anxiety, irritability, anger or fatigue is different. Symptoms like breast tenderness and bloating are occur quite common during PMDD; however, they are not witnessed during BD.
  • Elevated mood: BD can make one experience the increased levels of energy, racing thoughts, activity and mood. A person may also have hallucinations or delusional thoughts. However, this is not the case with PMDD, which makes one feel low on energy.
  • Treatment options: While the treatment options for PMDD is restricted to drugs that change hormone release or treat symptoms, such as antidepressants and mild oral contraceptives, these medications can have adverse effects on BD patients. The antidepressants that target serotonin levels are usually not prescribed to BD patients due to the fear of experiencing the problem of “rapid cycling,” a dangerous phenomenon of going through the experience of four or more episodes of mania or depression in a year.

Avoid adverse implications by seeking treatment

There are many women who get affected by BD, PMDD or both. It is extremely important to make sure that these conditions are diagnosed at the right time for an effective treatment plan that ensures complete recovery. It is important to remember that BD affects women differently and PMDD is a women’s issue. Therefore, it is best to seek help from a specialized treatment facility for women. The experts available at a women’s mental health rehab are more adept at understanding the implications of these conditions on women.

Sovereign Health of Arizona is one of the best mental health treatment centers for women. With the state-of-the-art infrastructure and comprehensive treatment plans, this facility makes it easier for women to feel at home and attain recovery. For more information on our treatment programs or to locate the finest treatment centers for women in Arizona, call our 24/7 helpline number or chat online with our representatives.

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