A manic episode is a sustained period of unusually intense energy, racing thoughts and extreme behavior. People can also experience hallucinations and delusions, which indicate a break from reality.
What Does a Manic Episode Feel Like?
Mania is a dramatic departure from your usual mood, and can disrupt your life. It causes people to display abnormally high levels of physical and mental activity and euphoria.
Due to the delusions of grandeur that accompany mania, someone going through a manic period might expend a lot of time and energy working on unrealistic projects or experience a productivity burst that is beyond what they would normally accomplish. They may also engage in risky behavior such as gambling or going on a buying spree because they feel invincible.
Mania and Hypomania
Mania and hypomania are two distinct types of episodes with shared symptoms. Mania is more severe and causes more obvious problems with personal and professional responsibilities. Manic episodes may also require hospitalization if they trigger a psychotic break.
Mania and hypomania can last for a week or more, with symptoms that include:
- Being unusually upbeat, jumpy or wired
- Increased activity, energy or agitation
- Decreased need for sleep
- Unusual talkativeness, including talking more loudly or quickly than usual
- Intrusive thoughts
- Repetitive and intrusive thoughts
- Impaired judgment and poor decision-making ability
- Delusions of grandeur
What Causes Mania?
While manic episodes are most common in people living with bipolar disorder, there are also other causes for these extreme changes in behavior and mood, including brain injuries, seasonal affective disorder, postpartum psychosis, schizoaffective disorder and cyclothymia. Mania can also be a side effect of drug and alcohol use.
You may be more likely to develop mania if mental health disorders run in your family, you are under an unusually high amount of stress or are struggling to cope with a recent change in your life.
Manic Episode Treatment
While there is no cure for manic episodes, they often respond well to a combination of lifestyle changes and therapy. Talking with a trained mental health professional can help you keep track of your mood and alert you to when it may be changing. In some cases, your health provider may prescribe you a medication such as a mood stabilizer, antidepressant or antipsychotic to help you manage your symptoms.
As one of your self-care strategies, look for a support group with other people who have had manic episodes. You can find camaraderie and gain new coping mechanisms for handling triggers as they arise. Knowing your triggers can help you prepare for a manic episode, lessen its effects or prevent it from happening.
Change Your Life Today
Vista Taos is a family-owned addiction treatment center in the spiritual center of Taos, New Mexico. Our holistic philosophy addresses all facets of health for total wellness. If you are looking for a place to heal from a substance use disorder, please reach out to us to learn more about how we can help you.