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Can environmental stress increase the risk of bipolar disorder?

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People are sometimes diagnosed with bipolar disorder after a stressful or traumatic event in their lives. These environmental triggers can include seasonal changes, holidays, and major life changes such as starting a new job, losing a job, going to college, family disagreements, marriage, or a death in the family. Stress, in and of itself, does not cause bipolar disorder (much the way pollen doesn't cause seasonal allergies). But in people who are biologically vulnerable to bipolar disorder, having effective skills for managing life stresses can be critical to avoid things that can aggravate the illness (such as drugs and alcohol).

From: Bipolar Disorder: Who’s at Risk? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

American Psychiatric Association. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition.

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: "Bipolar Statistics."

Child and Adolescent Bipolar Foundation: "Hypothyroidism: Is It Contributing to Your Child's Symptoms?"

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: "Types of Bipolar Disorder."

National Institute of Mental Health: "Different Families, Different Characteristics: Different Types of Bipolar Disorder?"

National Foundation for Depressive Illness: "Depression Facts."

National Alliance on Mental Illness: "Roadmap to Recovery and Care."

National Mental Health Association: "Bipolar Disorder: What You Need to Know."

Fieve, R. . Bipolar II

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on August 17, 2017

SOURCES:

American Psychiatric Association. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition.

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: "Bipolar Statistics."

Child and Adolescent Bipolar Foundation: "Hypothyroidism: Is It Contributing to Your Child's Symptoms?"

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: "Types of Bipolar Disorder."

National Institute of Mental Health: "Different Families, Different Characteristics: Different Types of Bipolar Disorder?"

National Foundation for Depressive Illness: "Depression Facts."

National Alliance on Mental Illness: "Roadmap to Recovery and Care."

National Mental Health Association: "Bipolar Disorder: What You Need to Know."

Fieve, R. . Bipolar II

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on August 17, 2017

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What are warning signs of suicide risk in someone who has bipolar disorder?

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