Bipolar Disorder is Serious–and Sometimes Lethal

Bipolar disorder is a chronic and persistent mental illness that wreaks emotional, physical, and social havoc on millions of people each year. In addition to being a relatively common illness, it’s complex and often difficult to diagnose. There are comparable rates between veterans and the general public, but research shows that veterans suffering from bipolar disorder are more likely to die by suicide than those diagnosed with depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. The primary treatment is medication. Unfortunately, compliance is poor, and medication side effects can be severe. Also, if the person is experiencing an emotional high or manic state, interrupting the euphoric feelings is the last thing he or she wants to do.

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