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Can someone with bipolar disorder have psychotic symptoms?

Sheri Van Dijk
Psychiatry

Yes, psychosis can be a part of bipolar disorder; this can happen in two ways: for people with Bipolar I, psychosis can be a part of a manic episode (psychosis does not occur in hypomania, and therefore people who have a diagnosis of Bipolar II do not experience psychosis when their mood is elevated). Psychosis can also occur during depressive episodes.

It's also important to note, however, that psychosis can also occur in other disorders: some personality disorders, for instance, can cause psychosis; substance abuse can cause psychotic symptoms; and even unipolar depression and post-partum depression can result in these kinds of symptoms. While scary, psychosis can be treated; and just because you experience these symptoms once, doesn't mean they'll return. Just keep in mind that, the sooner you treat psychosis, the quicker it will resolve.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.