Hypomania and Mania

Hypomania and Mania

Hypomania and mania are periods of over-active and excited behaviour that can have a significant impact on your day-to-day life.

Mania is when people experience periods of overactive and excited behaviour with an extreme sense of energy and optimism.

Mania can change how people feel emotionally and physically. It can also affect their thinking and behaviour. Although people experiencing mania initially feel high, they can become irritated when others don’t share their optimistic outlook.

Mania can lead to people making bad decisions, have a lack of concentration and behaving in either embarrassing, harmful or occasionally dangerous ways. When the feelings aren’t as extreme it is classed as hypomania.

You might have hypomania and/or mania on their own or as part of some mental health problems – including bipolar disorder, postpartum psychosis or schizoaffective disorder.

Common Experiences of Hypomania and Mania

  • Feelings of extreme happiness.
  • Full of energy.
  • Making unrealistic plans.
  • Increased irritability and aggression.
  • High risk behaviour, such as spending large amounts of money or substance abuse.
  • Increased sexual energy.
  • Eating or drinking very little.
  • Speaking very quickly.
  • Difficulty relaxing.

Personal Story

“The bluey greens of my eyes deepen when I'm swimming through episodes of mania.

“At first it feels exciting talking fast in overlapping sentences to friends but when the television and radio start shouting at you, next thing friends are dropping you scared of the words you begin to utter.

“Sexual energy is felt with every blink. Strangers become appealing and danger is not far.

“A shift happens and the perpetual euphoria explodes into screaming paranoia. The police become involved and they look at you like you are just a crazy girl who should be locked up, when really you have just lost your way but the tears can't talk.

“I become stigmatised by friends telling me I’m weird and deluded, so they distance themselves from me, which makes me feel like I have a personality flaw, rather than an illness. Even close family have completely ignored me after being put in hospital, telling me it’s my fault.”

– Julie

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