Manic depressive illness

Sufferers experience severe mood swings. These mood swings may be low as in depression or high resulting in periods of exaggerated elation. These high periods are known as ‘manic’ phases. Many sufferers have both high and low phases, but some will only experience either depression or mania.

About one in every hundred adults will suffer from manic depression at some point in life. It can start at any time during or after the teenage years. Manic depression affects as many men as women.

It is a serious condition but with the right treatment it is possible to live a fairly normal life.

The Royal College of Psychiatrists "Manic depression leaflet" describes the various aspects of the disorder, the particular problems which can occur, ways of coping with these and the range of treatments available.

Further information

Royal College of Psychiatrists

This article published on
08 February 2006

Next review date 2/1/2013


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