Millions of people in American suffer from depression as well as bipolar disorder. Even though medication can often help, the proper diagnosis is needed to effectively both. Unfortunately, it can many times be difficult to differentiate between bipolar disorder and depression. It is common for some people to first receive the misdiagnoses of depression. With these two conditions, even medical professionals have difficulty telling them apart. If some time is taken to be educated about their feature, a determination can be made. An accurate diagnosis can then be made and proper treatment started.
Bipolar disorder, also referred to as manic depression, is a mental condition that is characterized by unusual lows as well as highs in a persons mood. A person with this disorder experiences times when they are down, tired or generally depressed. These periods may last for a few months or many years. This is why often times it is first diagnosed as depression. The flip side of this depressed state is a period of 'mania' where some feels unusually energetic or good and does not need as much sleep. It is the manic times that make the difference between bipolar disorder and depression. Many times someone who is bipolar has periods that they feel normal and the manic periods are often unreported.
No, how to tell if you are depressed or bipolar. That will have to be determined by a doctor and what your symptoms are. If you feel depressed or 'down', a doctor needs to be seen. Questions need to be asked like 'are there times when you are unusually happy?' and 'are there periods in life were you need less sleep than usual?' These types of questions will have to be answered to determine the correct diagnosis.