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Bipolar Disorder Specialist

Julie Hall, MD

Psychiatrist located in Los Angeles, CA

Suffering from bipolar disorder can leave you feeling hopeless. One day you’re overly productive and energized, then the next day, you have difficulty getting out of bed. You don’t have to struggle with bipolar disorder on your own. Visit with Dr. Julie M. Hall in Los Angeles, to get the right diagnosis. As a psychiatrist with a special interest in bipolar disorder, Dr. Hall can find the proper treatment for you.

Bipolar Disorder Q & A

What does it mean to have a “manic” episode?

During a manic episode, a person feels overly energized. Other symptoms of a manic episode include:

  • Being shaky, jittery or “wired”
  • Being overly relaxed or comfortable
  • Feeling like the mind is racing
  • Talking fast
  • Doing risky things
  • Getting easily agitated or irritable
  • Inability to sleep
  • Taking on a lot of different tasks at once

Most patients describe being manic as being “up” or “elated.” But extreme highs are often followed by extreme lows. People who are down, or depressed get into dark, sad, hopeless moods, which can be equally as dangerous.

Are there different categories of bipolar disorder?

Yes. People at the top end of the spectrum, called bipolar I disorder, experience manic episodes for a minimum of 7 days. It’s also common to experience depressive episodes that can last for 2 weeks or more. Some patients experience a mixture of both manic and depressive stages and may require hospitalization.

Bipolar II disorder often involves having a series of depression and hypomanic (slightly less manic) episodes, and the symptoms are usually less severe than bipolar I episodes. Patients with numerous episodes of both hypomanic and depressive symptoms over at least a 2-year period may be diagnosed with a bipolar condition called cyclothymic disorder.

In some cases, there isn’t a cut-and-dry diagnosis. Further evaluation and psychotherapy may be needed to work through an unspecified bipolar or related disorder.

How do I get through it?

Because the extreme highs and extreme lows associated with bipolar disorder are difficult to manage on your own, it’s critical to have a caring doctor on your side. Dr. Hall can set you up on a regular psychotherapy schedule, so you work with her, even on days when you’re feeling better. She can also prescribe medications to help stabilize your mood.

If needed, Dr. Hall can guide you to day treatment programs, substance abuse treatment, or inpatient hospitalization, until your symptoms are manageable. No matter which treatment option is best for you, rest assured that you’re not alone.