As if being bipolar weren’t already difficult enough, bipolar people often find themselves saddled with a plethora of coexisting, or ‘comorbid’ conditions. Borderline personality disorder, ADHD, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and social phobia are just a few of the many extra ‘toppings’ someone with bipolar disorder might expect to come with their condition.
These comorbidities can make each condition much more difficult to treat, especially as there can be significant overlap in their symptoms; sometimes it’s hard to tell where one ends and the next begins.
At the end of the day, the myriad symptoms of bipolar disorder just serve to reinforce the fact that there is no ‘normal.’ Even a psychiatric illness with a defining set of characteristics can differ drastically from person to person.
Everyone’s experience with bipolar disorder is unique, and should be treated as such. Bipolar patients should work closely with their medical professionals to address and treat their unique set of symptoms individually, and reassess treatment plans as symptoms change.