Bipolar Affective Disorder
(see also: mental health)
In bipolar disorder, sufferers experience mood swings that can be far beyond what most people ever experience in the course of their lives. These mood swings may be low, as in depression, or high, as in periods when they might feel very elated. These high periods are often known as 'manic' phases. Many sufferers have both high and low phases, but some will only experience either depression or mania.
Where to get help
If you think you may have bipolar disorder it is important to see your GP. If you already have this diagnosis and are already receiving treatment, it is important to transfer to a local GP while you are studying at University. This should be done at the earliest opportunity to avoid any disruption in your treatment. As with any ongoing mental health condition, it is important to access support as soon as possible, to help you manage and alleviate symptoms and minimise the disruption in your life.
A list of local doctors is available from Student Support and Wellbeing Centre. You can also find a list of local Doctors by using the NHS in England link.
Mental Health Support and Counselling are available to all students. If you have a diagnosis or feel unsure about any symptoms you are experiencing, you can contact the Counselling and Mental Health Support Team.
Our Mental Health Practitioners will discuss any support needs you may have in relation to your studies. For example, they can liaise with Schools regarding study needs or exam arrangements. They can also help with the process of applying for Disabled Student Allowance. Mental Health Practitioners are also able to offer longer term or ongoing support; they can work with you to maintain a good level of mental health, help you develop skills and strategies to respond to any symptoms, and if appropriate form part of your larger support system.
If you feel you are having difficulty coping, or feel that no one around understands what you are going through, or just need someone to talk to and discuss your problems, you may find talking to a Counsellor helpful. The Counsellor will be able to listen, acknowledge your feelings and think with you about what might be helpful. Where appropriate, they can refer you to additional sources of support.