Symptoms of bipolar quiz

FREE Bipolar Disorder Test & Screening

Bipolar Disorder

Do I have bipolar? Take this bipolar disorder quiz to see if you may benefit from further diagnosis and treatment from a mental health professional.

Medical ReviewerRandy Bressler, PsyD

Who Is This Bipolar Disorder Quiz For?

The questions below relate to life experiences that are common among people who have bipolar disorder. Please read each question carefully, and indicate how often you have experienced the same or similar challenges in the past few weeks.

How Accurate Is It?

This quiz is NOT a diagnostic tool. Mental health disorders can only be diagnosed by a licensed mental health professional or doctor.

Psycom believes assessments can be a valuable first step toward getting treatment. All too often people stop short of seeking help out of fear their concerns aren't legitimate or severe enough to warrant professional intervention.

What's the Screening Test for Bipolar Disorder Like?

Talking with a doctor or mental health professional is the first step in identifying bipolar disorder. Specific criteria for diagnosis are laid out in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5).

In a screening for bipolar disorder, you'll be asked several questions about your symptoms and how long they have occurred.

What Other Tests Will You Need to Take?

A doctor may perform a physical evaluation to rule out any other conditions that may be causing symptoms.

What are Potential Results of Screening for Bipolar?

An estimated 2.8% of U.S. adults have been diagnosed with bipolar disorder. If left undiagnosed or untreated, the condition usually worsens, causing more problems with mood, energy and clear thinking.

If a diagnosis comes back as negative for bipolar, but you still experience symptoms, a health care professional may screen you for a similar condition such as schizophrenia or depression.

Getting a professional screening can start you on the path toward treatment, which can help improve your quality of life.

What are the Treatment Options for Bipolar Disorder?

Typically, a combination of medication and psychotherapy is recommended to treat bipolar disorder.


Several types of therapy may be helpful in treating bipolar issues:

  • Interpersonal and social rhythm therapy (IPSRT). IPSRT focuses on stabilizing daily rhythms, since following a consistent routine in sleeping, eating, and exercising may help you to manage your moods.

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). By identifying unhealthy, negative beliefs and behaviors and replacing them with healthy, positive ones, CBT can help identify what triggers your bipolar episodes. You also learn effective strategies to manage stress and to cope with upsetting situations.

  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy: Including both individual and group therapy, DBT teaches mindfulness and acceptance skills such as “the ability to experience moment-to-moment thoughts, emotions and their accompanying physical sensations from an observer’s stance, without negative judgment.

  • Psychoeducation. Learning about bipolar disorder can help you and your loved ones understand the condition. Knowing what’s going on can help you get the best support, identify issues, make a plan to prevent relapse, and stick with treatment.

  • Family-focused therapy. Family support and communication can help you stick with your treatment plan and help you and your loved ones recognize and manage warning signs of mood swings.


Many medications can effectively treat bipolar disorder:

  • Mood stabilizers. Used to control manic or hypomanic episodes, these include lithium (Lithobid), valproic acid (Depakene), divalproex sodium (Depakote), carbamazepine (Tegretol, Equetro, others), and lamotrigine (Lamictal)).

  • Antipsychotics. Adding an antipsychotic may help relieve depressive or manic symptoms that persist despite treatment with other drugs. Taking these alone or with a mood stabilizer may help. Such drugs include: olanzapine (Zyprexa), risperidone (Risperdal), quetiapine (Seroquel), aripiprazole (Abilify), ziprasidone (Geodon), lurasidone (Latuda) or asenapine (Saphris).

  • Antidepressants. Employed to manage depression, antidepressants are usually prescribed with a mood stabilizer or antipsychotic, since an antidepressant alone can sometimes trigger a manic episode.

  • Antidepressant-antipsychotic. The medication Symbyax combines the antidepressant fluoxetine and the antipsychotic olanzapine. It works as a depression treatment and a mood stabilizer.

  • Anti-anxiety medications. Benzodiazepines may help with anxiety and improve sleep but are usually used on a short-term.

Your privacy is important to us. All results are completely anonymous. This quiz is not a substitute for a proper assessment from a health care professional.

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This test is based on the bipolar screening questionnaire created by Dr. Ivan Goldberg. If you think you may be suffering from Bipolar Disorder or any other mental health condition, PsyCom strongly recommends that you seek help from a doctor in order to receive a proper diagnosis and support.

Bipolar Disorder FAQs

How is bipolar disorder diagnosed?

Bipolar disorder is diagnosed through a clinical interview with a licensed mental health professional, explains Simon A. Rego, PsyD, Chief Psychologist at Montefiore Medical Center and Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City.

“Sometimes, the mental health professional will also ask the person to complete some assessment measures to aid in the diagnosis,” Rego says. “They may also ask to speak with a family member or partner, or other significant person in the person’s life, in order to get additional information about the impact the disorder has had on the person and their relationships.

Who can diagnose bipolar?

Bipolar disorder is most often diagnosed by a mental health professional, such as a psychologist, psychiatrist, or social worker.

When is bipolar diagnosed?

Bipolar disorder is typically diagnosed during the late teen years or early adulthood, says Simon A. Rego, PsyD, Chief Psychologist at Montefiore Medical Center and Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. Occasionally, bipolar symptoms can appear in children.

To be diagnosed with bipolar disorder, the person must have experienced at least one depressive episode and one manic or hypomanic episode.

How long does it take to diagnose bipolar disorder?

Diagnosing the disorder can be done in one or two assessment sessions, says Simon A. Rego, PsyD, Chief Psychologist at Montefiore Medical Center and Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. However, because bipolar disorder can be confused with other disorders such as depression and borderline personality disorder, getting the correct diagnosis can take some time.

For example, some research suggests that it takes an average of three and a half years to confirm a diagnosis of bipolar disorder after the first major mood episode, with other research suggesting it can take even longer, Rego says.

Can people tell they are bipolar?

People can often tell that something is wrong (often with their mood), but may not always be able to accurately label it as bipolar. For example, it is frequently easy for people to know when they are depressed, but sometimes symptoms of mania go unnoticed, or feel “good,” so they are not as easily seen as an issue, says Simon A. Rego, PsyD, Chief Psychologist at Montefiore Medical Center and Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City.

Can bipolar disorder go away?

Bipolar disorder tends to be seen as an ongoing condition that waxes and wanes throughout one’s life, says Simon A. Rego, PsyD, Chief Psychologist at Montefiore Medical Center and Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City.

“Fortunately, the symptoms can often be controlled and stabilized in most cases when proper treatment (ideally, the combination of medication and psychotherapy) is in place,” Rego says.

Can bipolar disorder get worse with age?

Bipolar disorder may get worse with age—but this is generally the case over time if it is left untreated, explains Simon A. Rego, PsyD, Chief Psychologist at Montefiore Medical Center and Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. If treated with a combination of medication and therapy, people have a much better chance of managing their bipolar disorder, Rego says. “Even then, it’s important for people to monitor their symptoms and seek help right away if they start to feel a change in their mood,” he says.

Can anxiety turn into bipolar?

There is no research evidence that suggests that anxiety can turn into bipolar disorder, says Simon A. Rego, PsyD, Chief Psychologist at Montefiore Medical Center and Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. People with bipolar disorder may experience feelings of anxiety, however, and may also confuse some of the symptoms of bipolar disorder for symptoms of anxiety.

In addition, some of the symptoms of bipolar disorder can also be associated with some of the anxiety disorders, Rego says. And some people may have both an anxiety disorder and bipolar disorder.

“So it's not always so easy to sort these things out,” Rego says. “It is much more important to seek professional help if you’re experiencing symptoms that are causing you distress or interference in your ability to function in life.

Notes: This article was originally published March 29, 2016 and most recently updated November 11, 2021.

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Question 1

Sometimes I am much more talkative than at other times

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Question 2

I have periods where I feel wired or hyper and am really active

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Question 3

I have periods where I feel really irritable or speeded up

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Question 4

I have had times where I am both depressed and elated at the same time

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Question 5

There are large variations in the quantity and quality of my work depending on my mood

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Question 6

I have periods where I cry a great deal and then at other times I feel really happy and joke or laugh excessively

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Question 7

I have times where I feel really optimistic about life and other times where I feel there is no hope

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Question 8

There are times where I have a lot more interest in sex than at other times

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Question 9

At times I feel really angry and hostile

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Question 10

I have periods of mental dullness and other periods of very creative thinking

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Question 11

At times I am very sociable and other times I just want to be left alone

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Question 1 of 11

When answering the above statements think about whether they have usually applied to you across much of your adult life - if the symptoms you are experiencing are new to you it could be indicative of certain types of Bipolar or it could be a result of something else.

This test assumes that you have already had at least one episode of depression in your life, and will give an indication as to whether you are experiencing the most common symptoms of Bipolar disorder. It cannot replace a full assessment nor should be used to self diagnose or decide upon a treatment plan.

This test was adapted from: Goldberg Bipolar Spectrum Screening Questionnaire, a Screening Test for Bipolar Spectrum Disorders.

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Bipolar Disorder | Symptoms, complications, diagnosis and treatment

Bipolar disorder, formerly called manic depression, is a mental health condition that causes extreme mood swings that include emotional highs (mania or hypomania) and lows (depression). Episodes of mood swings may occur infrequently or several times a year.

When you become depressed, you may feel sad or hopeless and lose interest or pleasure in most activities. When the mood shifts to mania or hypomania (less extreme than mania), you may feel euphoric, full of energy or unusually irritable. These mood swings can affect sleep, energy, alertness, judgment, behavior, and the ability to think clearly. nine0003

Although bipolar disorder is a lifelong condition, you can manage your mood swings and other symptoms by following a treatment plan. In most cases, bipolar disorder is treated with medication and psychological counseling (psychotherapy).


There are several types of bipolar and related disorders. They may include mania, hypomania, and depression. The symptoms can lead to unpredictable changes in mood and behavior, leading to significant stress and difficulty in life. nine0003

  • Bipolar disorder I. You have had at least one manic episode, which may be preceded or accompanied by hypomanic or major depressive episodes. In some cases, mania can cause a break with reality (psychosis).
  • Bipolar disorder II. You have had at least one major depressive episode and at least one hypomanic episode, but never had a manic episode.
  • nine0015 Cyclothymic disorder. You have had at least two years - or one year in children and adolescents - many periods of hypomanic symptoms and periods of depressive symptoms (though less severe than major depression).
  • Other types. These include, for example, bipolar and related disorders caused by certain drugs or alcohol, or due to health conditions such as Cushing's disease, multiple sclerosis, or stroke. nine0018

Bipolar II is not a milder form of Bipolar I but is a separate diagnosis. Although bipolar I manic episodes can be severe and dangerous, people with bipolar II can be depressed for longer periods of time, which can cause significant impairment.

Although bipolar disorder can occur at any age, it is usually diagnosed in adolescence or early twenties. Symptoms can vary from person to person, and symptoms can change over time. nine0003

Mania and hypomania

Mania and hypomania are two different types of episodes, but they share the same symptoms. Mania is more pronounced than hypomania and causes more noticeable problems at work, school, and social activities, as well as relationship difficulties. Mania can also cause a break with reality (psychosis) and require hospitalization.

Both a manic episode and a hypomanic episode include three or more of these symptoms:

  • Abnormally optimistic or nervous
  • Increased activity, energy or excitement
  • Exaggerated sense of well-being and self-confidence (euphoria)
  • Reduced need for sleep
  • Unusual talkativeness
  • Distractibility
  • Poor decision-making - for example, in speculation, in sexual encounters or in irrational investments

Major depressive episode

Major depressive episode includes symptoms that are severe enough to cause noticeable difficulty in daily activities such as work, school, social activities, or relationships. Episode includes five or more of these symptoms:

  • Depressed mood, such as feeling sad, empty, hopeless, or tearful (in children and adolescents, depressed mood may manifest as irritability)
  • Marked loss of interest or feeling of displeasure in all (or nearly all) activities
  • Significant weight loss with no diet, weight gain, or decreased or increased appetite (in children, failure to gain weight as expected may be a sign of depression)
  • Either insomnia or sleeping too much
  • Either anxiety or slow behavior
  • Fatigue or loss of energy
  • nine0015 Feelings of worthlessness or excessive or inappropriate guilt
  • Decreased ability to think or concentrate, or indecisiveness
  • Thinking, planning or attempting suicide

Other features of bipolar disorder

Signs and symptoms of bipolar I and bipolar II disorder may include other signs such as anxiety disorder, melancholia, psychosis, or others. The timing of symptoms may include diagnostic markers such as mixed or fast cycling. In addition, bipolar symptoms may occur during pregnancy or with the change of seasons. nine0003

When to see a doctor

Despite extreme moods, people with bipolar disorder often do not realize how much their emotional instability disrupts their lives and the lives of their loved ones and do not receive the necessary treatment.

And if you are like people with bipolar disorder, you can enjoy feelings of euphoria and be more productive. However, this euphoria is always accompanied by an emotional disaster that can leave you depressed and possibly in financial, legal, or other bad relationships. nine0003

If you have symptoms of depression or mania, see your doctor or mental health professional. Bipolar disorder does not improve on its own. Getting mental health treatment with a history of bipolar disorder can help control your symptoms.

Signs and features of bipolar disorder

Sudden mood swings, increased excitability, in connection with this, behavioral disturbances, a sudden change in increased activity to the appearance of apathy, a desire to just lie down and do nothing, the appearance of thoughts and actions that do not correspond to the situation and are unusual for the nature of the given person person. Relatives often explain such behavior of a person by fatigue, problems at work, a “difficult” character, and they sincerely wonder why it is not possible to change his mood with a “heart-to-heart talk”. But with such symptoms, you should not wait - you need to contact a psychiatrist as soon as possible. It may not just be accumulated fatigue and mood swings, but symptoms of bipolar affective disorder (BAD). What is it, says Vladimir Yarovitsky - a psychiatrist of the highest category, candidate of medical sciences, associate professor of the department of psychiatry of the Stavropol State Medical University, head of the first general psychiatric department of the Stavropol Regional Clinical Specialized Psychiatric Hospital No. 1. nine0003

- Bipolar affective disorder. What is hidden under this definition?

- Let's take a closer look at this term. Bipolar - literally means two poles, affective - pathological mood changes. And the word "disorder" emphasizes that it is still a disease. In specialized literature, the abbreviation BAR is often used. Bipolar affective disorder is a relatively new term for domestic psychiatry. So, until the beginning of the 90s of the last century, the term manic-depressive psychosis was used to define such conditions in medicine. This is perhaps a more “hard” term, given the word psychosis, but it clearly demonstrates the appearance of pronounced painful symptoms that disrupt a person’s adaptation in society - manic state and depression are its main manifestations. In the 10th international classification of diseases, which we now use, manic depressive psychosis was divided into 2 diagnostic areas: bipolar disorder and recurrent depressive disorder, where only depressive phases take place during the course of the disease. BAD is characterized by a change in manic and depressive phases, between which a person can work normally, remain a full-fledged member of society and do not differ from others in their behavior. nine0003

What are the risk factors? At what age can the disease manifest itself, what plays the main role: heredity or concomitant diseases?

- It is difficult to answer unambiguously. Here, as in other endogenous diseases, heredity plays a significant role, but it cannot be said that the cause is only in the genes. If one of the parents is sick, then the probability of getting sick in a child is 12-15% and this manifests itself quite early - at 15-20 years old. In general, bipolar disorder is a multifactorial disease in which not only genetics is important, but also living conditions. If there is a predisposition, then some emotional impulse and certain events can provoke the development of the disease. nine0003

How does the disease manifest itself? How to distinguish mood swings from bipolar disorder?

- In psychiatry, the line between health and illness is a bit blurry. To diagnose the disease, you need to consider many factors. And if a person has only apathy or mood swings, it is impossible to talk about the presence of a bipolar disorder.

Bipolar affective disorder is more complex than a mood illness. The main pathology in this case is a sharp and unreasonable change in mood, behavior and emotions. It is very difficult to distinguish when a person has an excessively changed mood, a manic, depressive state. Only doctors should do this. nine0003

Mood changes are normal if they are associated with some events or memories. But the appearance of disadaptation, disorder of behavior, the emergence of emotions that do not correspond to the situation, a violation of self-awareness, a violation of attention and adequacy in a given situation are already signs of a disease. The depressive phase can last several months or more. Manic - in short. During it, there are sleep disturbances, the emergence of many ideas and little-existing plans, there is a physical upsurge, there is a constant desire to change something. BAD is a complex breakdown of the body, in which not only the psyche suffers, but also somatic diseases become aggravated. nine0003

Can bipolar disorder be prevented?

– The main prevention of BAD is to get to a specialist on time. Diagnosis should be timely and specialized. It is estimated that patients with bipolar disorder lose up to 9-10 years of normal life if the disease is not diagnosed in time and treatment is not started. In a depressed state, a person is not able to enjoy life and live it fully. He cannot work and make plans. Everything around him appears in gloomy colors. Such a person seems to be walking under a large black umbrella, which closes not only the horizon, but also everything that is nearby. Timely diagnosis and timely treatment improve the course of the disease, reduce the number of attacks and their duration. During remission, the patient can live a normal life, rejoice and enjoy it. But to go into remission, you need medications that only a doctor can prescribe. nine0003

– What should relatives do?

- BAD is a problem not only for those people who are ill, but also for those who live with them. Changes in mood from increased activity to aggression and apathy, of course, greatly affect ordinary life, the atmosphere in the house and create tension.

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