Bipolar Disorder causes major shifts in mood, energy, thinking and behavior. People who suffer from bipolar disorder can experience the highs of mania and the lows of depression. These are two extremes on opposite sides of the spectrum but they also experience anything and everything in between the two extremes. These extremes must last longer than a fleeting good or bad mood. They can last from days to weeks and even months. The switch from one mood to the other is much more intense than a normal mood swing. These switches impair a person’s ability to function. There are four types of mood episodes associated with bipolar disorder: mania, hypomania, depression, and mixed episodes. Each mood episode has its own signs and symptoms. Hypomania is a less severe form of mania; the symptoms aren’t as intense as the symptoms of mania. There are three different faces of bipolar disorder: bipolar I disorder, bipolar II disorder, and cyclothymia. Each of these will be discussed more in depth in later posts.