Bipolar Disorder Prognosis In 2020 – How Many People Have It?

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Bipolar Disorder prognosis

For the prognosis of bipolar disorder[1]: Many people with bipolar disorder have successful good treatment, which, in turn, results from an accurate diagnosis. Because bipolar disorder may have a high rate of both under-diagnosis and diagnosis wrong, it is often difficult for people with the condition to receive competent treatment.

Patients with bipolar disorder are misdiagnosed frequently, and many of them go through multiple visits to psychiatrists and therapists and try several therapies before receiving an accurate diagnosis and treatment. Additionally, It is important to give your health care provider the medical history   as complete and accurate as possible, but it can be hard to do when going through a difficult period. Although there is no “cure” for bipolar, that does not mean it is something you have to battle forever. 

On the other hand, Prognosis for bipolar disorder[1] is like prognosis for diabetes or heart disease, bipolar disorder is a long-term illness that must be carefully managed throughout a person’s life. With the right treatment and care, you can live a healthy and fulfilling life.

Does bipolar get worse with age?

One thing to know about bipolar disorder is that it is sometimes difficult to recognize. When asked: “Is bipolar worse with age?” Perhaps the answer is  ambiguous, because the disorder goes unnoticed and untreated. In fact, 70% of people are misdiagnosed[2] before receiving the proper treatment

Not to mention that the average time[3] between onset of symptoms and diagnosis is 10 years. This is because people often confuse mania with “high energy” or ADHD. In addition, the minimum depressants are often associated with major depressive disorder. Misdiagnosis presents all kinds of problems for an individual with this serious disorder.

Apart from the difficulty of mood swings, other than the long-term effects of untreated bipolar disorder may:

Loss of ability to work

Bipolar disorder is number one cause of disability worldwide. Due to the extreme nature of the mood swings of bipolar disorder, many people find it difficult to work. They may act inappropriately in a work environment during mania, or no show during a depressive episode. Untreated bipolar disorder makes it difficult to work.

Stress on personal relationships

Irritability and risk behavior during mania can produce pressure on a relationship. In addition, the loss of self-esteem, low libido and an inability to communicate during depressive episodes may encumber relationships. These extreme mood swings can cause unemployment, divorce and legal issues.

Substance abuse problems

Studies show that in people with bipolar disorder untreated, drug abuse 56% and 44%[4] of alcohol abuse. Participation in the management of medication and therapy can significantly reduce this risk.

Suicide Risk

Studies  show that thirty percent of people with bipolar disorder untreated commit suicide. This statistic is destabilizing significantly decreased with the help of therapy and medication management.

So bipolar disorder does get worse as you get older, because it is still  left untreated.

Is Bipolar Genetic?

A hereditary disease can be transmitted through genetic material, like a father to one of his sons. For some hereditary diseases, as a type of breast cancer, doctors know exactly which gene causes the problem, and therefore, what is the probability of being passed along.

The genes are not known exactly related to bipolar disorder, which makes it difficult to explain the exact mechanisms of how the condition is genetically transmitted. The main theory is that many different genes, each from a small part, lead to bipolar disorder.

The primary hypothesis is that several different genes relate in a limited way to bipolar disorder. As said by Aimee Daramus PsyD, a clinical psychologist licensed and author of Bipolar Understanding Disorder: The Essential Family Guide[5]. Bipolar disorder is a type of diathesis-stress process, which means that an individual may inherit a greater probability of disruption, but that others may inherit a greater probability of disruption rather than physical harm or stress.

According to a Journal of Psychiatry and Neurology[6] study published in 2012, people who have a first-degree relative – as a parent or sibling – with bipolar disorder have a 15% to 35% more likely to also develop the disease. If someone has two first-degree relatives with bipolar disorder, your chances of having the disorder can increase about 75%.

According to the Bipolar Life Victoria of Australia[7], people with bipolar disorder have around 10% probability of having children with the disorder, too. He said that “most cases” the condition occur in families where a parent has bipolar already – but not all.

Living With Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar could have a negative impact[8] on your life. Mood swings may trouble keeping a job or maintaining a relationship of any kind. Every day you wake up with an uncertainty of what will make up your moods and how the day will go. You can reduce this problem though. With proper medical care and attention, you can maintain a semi-normal life and work better than you could without worrying about medical advice.

Bipolar Disorder diagnosis

Your medical regimen may vary but most will look something like this. Daily mood-stabilizing medications. This plays a key role in learning to live successfully with bipolar disorder. This may include all kinds of medicines and your doctor what is best in your particular case is determined. Take all your medicines, no matter how you feel. It might be an easy day if you do skip your medication, but this can be dangerous to your health.

An important aspect of healthy living and being bipolar is that you should avoid alcohol and drugs at any time. The concern is not only with the side effects you might experience to mix your medication with these substances, it is more like a warning of the effects they can have on your mood and behavior. Drug use and alcohol will almost certainly cause your mood to be larger and faster in your cycles.

The therapy is also likely a part of your medical recommendations. Having someone to talk to or call when you feel a particularly bad case of mania or depression can be the key approach to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. However difficult it can be sometimes to open up and tell their problems to someone, doing so is key to his mental condition. Otherwise, you could find yourself subject to their feelings until you reach a breaking point and end up in serious trouble.

Bipolar Disorder Prognosis 

Bipolar Disorder Prognosis In Long term

According to the National Institute of Mental Health[9], bipolar disorder affects about 5.7 million adult Americans, about 2.6% of the US population aged 18 and over each year. The average age  of onset for bipolar disorder is 25 years even though the disease can begin in early childhood or up to the age of 40 and 50s.

In addition, more than two-thirds[9] of people with bipolar disorder have at least one relative who has a disease, indicating that the disease has a hereditary component.

Bipolar disorder is often diagnosed in teens, usually first appearing in the late teenage years or early adulthood[10]. It is an incurable condition for life, but symptoms usually can be successfully managed with medications, such as antidepressants, mood stabilizers, and antipsychotics, as well as some form of therapy or counseling.

The prognosis for bipolar disorder varies depending on what type of bipolar disorder you have.

Bipolar I disorder

Also known as mania and depression, is more severe with episodes of mania or depression that may require hospitalization. Approximately 70 to 80%[9] of people with Bipolar I successfully treated. However, 20 to 30% will continue to have symptoms, including mood swings, and may have more difficulties in maintaining relationships and jobs.

Bipolar II disorder

Known as hypomania and depression, is less severe with no full manic episodes. About 85%[11] effective treatment for this condition. However, approximately 15% of affected individuals continue to have symptoms. About 5 to 15% of bipolar II patients may experience rapid cycling between mania and depression. This results in a complication bipolar disorder worse prognosis.

The bipolar prognosis affects also other mental health disorders and bipolar disorders, such as anxiety or eating disorders. Bipolar prognosis patients have a higher likelihood of relapse than individuals without concomitant conditions

Psychiatrists often recommend medications even when symptoms have subsided, to prevent recurrence. However, some people with bipolar disorder prefer no drugs, especially when they feel good. Some treatments that do not require drugs are available as an alternative, such as transcranial magnetic stimulation[12] (a non-invasive procedure that stimulates nerve cells in the brain).

In general, experts say that those who are able to follow a long term treatment plan, usually including drugs, therapy and a healthy lifestyle, can live well.

Bipolar Disorder Treatment

The treatment[13] of bipolar disorder aims to stabilize the mood of the person and reduce the severity of symptoms. The goal is to help the person to function effectively in daily life.

Bipolar Disorder prognosis

Treatment of bipolar disorder consists of a combination of therapies[14], including:

  • Medication Treatment
  • Psychotherapy and Counseling
  • Lifestyle Management 
  • Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) 

Medication Treatment

Medication can help stabilize mood and manage symptoms. A doctor will often prescribe a combination of:

  • Mood stabilizers, such as lithium[15] treatment, Atypical antipsychotics, such as quetiapine
  • Antidepressant
  • The second-generation antipsychotics (SGAs)
  • Anticonvulsants, to alleviate mania
  • Drug to help with sleep or anxiety

counseling And Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy[16], also known as “talk therapy,” can be an efficient part of the treatment plan for patients with bipolar disorders. It is a term for a variety of treatment techniques that help a person identify and change troubling emotions, thoughts and behaviors.

Lifestyle Management 

 Some lifestyle choices can help manage symptoms and maintain a stable mood maintain a stable mood .They include:

  • Maintain a regular routine
  • Following a healthy and varied diet
  • Establish a regular sleep pattern and taking steps to prevent sleep disorders
  • Get regular exercise

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) 

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is useful in a number of cases in patients with bipolar disorder, as when fast, the medical / psychiatric definite need; when the risks of ECT are less than other treatments; when bipolar disorder is refractory to a suitable test with other treatment strategies; and when a patient prefers this treatment modality.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is bipolar disorder?

Bipolar disorder may be a sort of mood disorder that affects all areas of life, including your attention, energy levels, mood, and behavior. Symptoms of manic depression are classified into two sorts of mood episodes, referred to as depression and mania. Some people with the disorder experience only mania, while others experience symptoms of both mania and depression.

What causes Bipolar Disorder?

There is no exact cause for manic depression. Researchers, however, have a sense of what factors increase the risk of developing the disorder. Experiencing traumatic events may also increase the risk. Although they do not cause interference, factors such as drug and alcohol use and lack of sleep can also trigger the onset of a manic or depressive episode

Can children be diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder?

Symptoms of bipolar disorder usually appear in early adulthood, but symptoms can also develop in childhood or adolescence. Symptoms of the condition can manifest differently in children and adolescents, with irritability often replace the sad mood of depressed or elevated mood to mania.

What are the available treatments for bipolar?

Because bipolar is a lifelong disease, so treatment should too. Talk to your doctor about the drug combination with some type of psychotherapy and what other types of treatments are available

What are the risks of lifestyle you might consider?

Everything from the risk of having a glass of wine with dinner if exercise will help. Some studies showed that chronic sleep disorders and stress negatively affect your illness, so talk to your doctor about this that can help mitigate the adverse symptoms from the beginning.

Bipolar disorder can be cured?

Bipolar disorder is a chronic lifetime disease. But the condition is very treatable, and symptoms can be managed with the right combination of medication, therapy and psycho-education.

+ 16 sources

Health Canal avoids using tertiary references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic researches from medical associations and institutions. To ensure the accuracy of articles in Health Canal, you can read more about the editorial process here

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  3. Camilo J. Ruggero, Gabrielle A. Carlson, Roman Kotov & Evelyn J. Bromet. 2010. 10-Year Diagnostic Consistency of Bipolar Disorder in a First-Admission Sample. Available from:
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  8. Melinda Smith, Jeanne Segal & Robert Segal. 2020. Living with bipolar disorder. Available from:
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  10. U.S. Department Of Health And Human Services, National Institutes of Health. 2020. Bipolar Disorder in Children and Teens.  Available from:
  11. Depression & Bipolar Support Alliance. Bipolar Disorder Statistics. Available from:
  12. Alexandra K Gold, Ana Claudia Ornelas, Patricia Cirillo, et al. 2019 [Sep. 30, 2019]. Clinical applications of transcranial magnetic stimulation in bipolar disorder. Available from:
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