Bipolar Disorder used to be known as Manic Depression.

It is a mental illness characterised by significant mood swings including manic highs (mania) and depressive lows (depression).

People with bipolar disorder often experience alternating episodes of mania and depression. Psychosis can happen, with hallucinations and delusional thinking.

Bipolar disorder often starts in adolescence/early adulthood and affects 1 in 100 adults in the course of their lives.  Research suggests that there is a genetic element in the illness.

Treatment for bipolar disorder is a combination of antipsychotics or lithium for highs, and antidepressants for lows, as well as psychological treatment.  Self help and recognising triggers is important too so the person with bipolar disorder can be more in control of the symptoms.