Alcohol and drug abuse are very common among people with bipolar disorder. Also, anxiety disorders, such as post-traumatic stress disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder, also may be common in people with bipolar disorder.
There are several types of disorders that can produce symptoms that mimic those of bipolar disorder. Intense mood swings that are often associated with bipolar disorder may also be caused by something else. For instance chemical imbalances, hormone disorders, infections and autoimmunity conditions have side effects similar to bipolar disorder. The manic and/or depressive states they cause may appear comparable to those of bipolar disease. Moreover, the symptoms of bipolar disorder can be found when using certain drugs and through the consumption of alcohol. People commonly mistake the mood swings of various other ailments for bipolar disorder or mistake the symptoms of bipolar disorder for these other types of disorders.
Schizophrenia and depression are two mental disorders that people often mistake for bipolar disorder. They possess similar symptoms to those of bipolar disorder.
Schizophrenia is a disease that affects the way a person views the world and alters their perspectives and mindsets. It could cause them to have hallucinations so life like that they soon believe they are real. People afflicted with this disease may develop an altered sense of reality or loss of contact with reality. They may not participate in activities or conversations because they have blurred the line between the imaginary world and the real world. Others may believe this to be depression when they remove themselves from daily life. However, this is not to be confused with bipolar disorder. The depressive state of bipolar disease is distinct in that the people actually have dark thoughts of suicide or death, while with schizophrenia; they are imagining things that may be frightening them.
Depression is another mental disorder should not be associated with bipolar disorder. Bipolar disorder involves the significant mood changes in a person from the manic state to the depressive state. Depression only involves feelings of sadness and despair. It is not characterized by a sudden change to a happy state. People suffering from depression normally continue in the depressive state.