Bipolar disorder, you have just been diagnosed with it. So what do you need to know about it? The short answer is that you best learn as much as you can about it. You should know all about a depressive disorder. You would also need to know what a manic episode involves. Indeed, knowledge of a hypomanic episode would be extremely useful. There are very good reasons this knowledge is essential. If you wish to manage bipolar disorder this level of knowledge is a key to achieving that objective.
Knowledge you gain about bipolar disorder enables you to learn to manage the disorder. By managing your disorder you give yourself the best possible odds for regaining control of your life. Normally this disorder goes in cycles. By this I mean that each person has a regular pattern they follow for each of their cycles. For instance take a person with bipolar type 1. A common pattern for this is hypomanic episode - manic episode - depressive episode. This is frequently followed by a period of stability.
A hypomanic episode can be treated far easier than an episode of mania. This being said there is often a danger in respect of hypomania. The danger is simply this. Many people find that the pluses of a hypomanic episode outweigh the minuses. The result is that they fail to acknowledge that a hypomanic is being experienced. Another possibility is that they fail to seek treatment for the hypomania. The unfortunate result is that a manic episode arrives. These are far harder to treat than hypomanic episodes.
The good old saying "What goes up must come down" certainly applies in respect of an episode of mania. Often these are followed by a depressive disorder. Bipolar type 2 and cyclothymaic's disorder do not normally lead to mania. However, it is very likely that a depressive disorder will follow hypomania. For a person with bipolar, type 2 the depression can last for a very long time. This can be months, or even longer.
In my experience recovering from depression often only occurs when the afflicted person tries to make it happen. By this I mean that they must want to recover and make a strong personal effort to ensure that they do. Remember, not all people cycle from mania to depression. By learning about the disorder the afflicted person (or their friends and lovers) can recognize any bipolar episode at the earliest possible moment. For some people their cycle starts with a depressive disorder.
Whichever order their cycle runs seeking professional help is a must. This should be done at the first moment you suspect that a bipolar episode is being experienced. This gives the best possible chance of managing the disorder. In turn the best chance of regaining control of the afflicted person's life is experienced.