Mania: What it is and How it Affects Mental Health

Mania is a mental health disorder that is part of bipolar disorder, a condition that affects how people think and behave. People with mania often experience periods of intense excited or irritable moods, unusually high energy levels, and decreased need for sleep or even sleeplessness. During these episodes, an individual may act impulsively, spend money recklessly, engage in risky behaviors like drug or alcohol abuse, or display unusual behaviors that are out of the ordinary. Mania can also cause severe depression and difficulty functioning in everyday life.

Symptoms of Mania

Symptoms of mania can vary in intensity, but generally include:

  • Elevated mood or feeling overly “high”
  • Excessively “high” energy and activity levels
  • Fast or racing thoughts
  • Agitation or irritability
  • Impulsiveness, restlessness, or risky behavior
  • Inflated self-esteem or grandiose ideas
  • Talking rapidly or more than usual
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Decreased need for sleep or insomnia

Treating Mania

Treatment for mania generally includes medications to stabilize mood, as well as psychotherapy and lifestyle modifications. Common medication treatments can include mood stabilizers, antipsychotics, and antidepressants. Psychotherapy, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, can help individuals recognize their triggers and cope with the symptoms of mania. Additionally, lifestyle changes including regular exercise, maintaining a healthy diet, and getting enough sleep may help to reduce the intensity and frequency of episodes of mania.