What causes mood disorders in teens is not well known. Certain chemicals in the brain are responsible for positive moods. Other chemicals in the brain neurotransmitters control the brain chemicals that affect mood. Mood disorders may be caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain. This can happen on its own. Or it can happen along with environmental factors, such as unexpected life events or long-lasting stress.
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Mood disorders can run in families. Researchers believe that many factors play a role. The factors that produce the trait or condition are often both inherited and environmental. They include a mix of genes from both parents. If a mother passes a mood disorder trait to her children, a daughter is more likely to have the disorder.
If a father passes a mood disorder trait to his children, a son is more likely to have the disorder. Anyone can feel sad or depressed at times. But mood disorders are more intense. They are harder to handle than normal feelings of sadness. Teens who have a parent or other relative with a mood disorder have a greater chance of also having a mood disorder. It is not definite that this will happen. But hard life events and stress can expose or exaggerate feelings of sadness or depression.
This makes the feelings harder to manage. It can be hard for a teen to cope with these situations.
These stressful life events can bring on feelings of sadness or depression. Or they can make a mood disorder harder to manage. It's harder to spot mood disorders in children and teens. Teens may show different symptoms than adults or small children.
It depends on their age and the type of mood disorder. These are the most common symptoms:. In mood disorders, these feelings seem stronger than teens normally feel from time to time. It is also of concern if these feelings last over a period of time. There are four basic types of bipolar disorder. Bipolar I - This is the most severe form.
Manic episodes last at least seven days or may be severe enough to require hospitalization. Depressive episodes will also occur, often lasting for at least two weeks.
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Sometimes symptoms of both mania and depression are present at the same time. Bipolar II disorder - This disorder causes cycles of depression similar to those of bipolar I. A person with this illness also experiences hypomania, which is a less severe form of mania. Hypomanic periods are not as intense or disruptive as manic episodes. Someone with bipolar II disorder is usually able to handle daily responsibilities and does not require hospitalization. Cyclothymia disorder cyclothymia - This type of bipolar disorder has sometimes been defined as a milder form of bipolar disorder.
In addition, changes in mood can occur quickly and at any time.
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There are only short periods of normal mood. For an adult to be diagnosed with cyclothymic, symptoms have to be experienced for at least 2 years. For children and adolescents, the, symptoms must persist for at least one year. Other mood disorders Premenstrual dysphoric disorder - This type of mood disorder occurs seven to 10 days before menstruation and goes away within a few days of the start of the menstrual period.
Researchers believe this disorder is brought about by the hormonal changes related to the menstrual cycle. Symptoms may include anger, irritability, tension, decreased interest in usual activities, and sleep problems. Intermittent explosive disorder - This is a lesser-known mood disorder marked by episodes of unwarranted anger.
What causes mood disorders? Risk factors include: Family history Previous diagnosis of a mood disorder Trauma, stress or major life changes in the case of depression Physical illness or use of certain medications. But depression can affect more than your mood: you might have a hard time concentrating or remembering. You might sleep or eat less than usual or more than usual. You might also feel tired all the time. Dysthymic disorder also called dysthymia is similar to depression. With dysthymic disorder, your symptoms of depression are milder but last for a longer period of time.
Bipolar disorder is made up of three different parts: depression, mania and normal feelings. The depression in bipolar disorder is like depression in any mood disorder. Mania is what makes bipolar disorder different.
Some people experience this as feeling very happy, but others feel very irritable or angry during an episode of mania. Common symptoms of mania include feeling very powerful, not needing much sleep and having racing thoughts. Some people experience psychosis during an episode of severe depression or mania. There are two parts to psychosis: delusions and hallucinations.
Mood disorders are among the most common mental illnesses. In fact, about one in seven Canadian will experience a mood disorder at some point in their life. Mood disorders are very treatable. Some common treatments, used on their own or in combination, are:. Counselling: The most common forms of counselling for people living with a mood disorder are cognitive-behavioural therapy and interpersonal therapy:. Medication: Depression is usually treated with a group of medications called antidepressants and bipolar disorder is usually treated with a group of medication called mood stabilizers.
You may also be prescribed other medications for psychosis or anxiety. Modern ECT is very safe, fast-acting and effective. Light therapy: People who experience SAD may find light therapy helpful. Self-management : There are some things you can do on your own to help keep you feeling better.