March 06, 2006
So many parents express concern about their children being diagnosed with bipolar at age 5, 10 or 15. How is bipolar diagnosed and what are some of the early onset signs?
First of all, it typically takes 8 to 10 years after the first signs of bipolar to receive the appropriate diagnosis. However, children and teens can have symptoms or early onset of bipolar, and bipolar can affect a person at any age. According to the International Society for Bipolar Disorders, 50 percent of parents who bring their kids in for bipolar actually have the disorder. The other half have other disorders that mimic bipolar such as ADHD or Asperger’s and could be misdiagnosed. You must make sure your kids are appropriately diagnosed or they could receive the wrong medication, which could have detrimental side effects.
Here is what parents need to be looking for in their children:
Symptoms of Mania:
-Exaggerated or inappropriate happiness, silliness or giddiness
– Inappropriate grandiose ideations, exaggerated self-esteem, unrealistic beliefs about their own powers
– Higher than normal energy levels – Exaggerated talkativeness
– Racing thoughts