For people suffering from bipolar disorder episodes of mania and depression can come and go throughout their lives. Researchers from the University of Granada in Spain looked at the psychiatric histories of 108 people diagnosed with bipolar disorder and have concluded, not surprisingly perhaps, that the more episodes people have the worse their quality of life. More than three previous manic episodes, current depression, smoking and being less well-educated were associated with problems in finding and holding down a job. Difficulty with social function increased with the number of hospitalizations, with multiple previous episodes of depression, in those who had lack of social support, and with current depression.In addition, individuals with bipolar disorder who were older, who showed potential signs of alcohol abuse, who had been hospitalized more often, or who had had repeated manic episodes, had more difficulty with family life.
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