bipolar disorder


Definition of bipolar disorder

: any of several psychological disorders of mood characterized usually by alternating episodes of depression and mania

called also manic depression, manic-depressive illness

Examples of bipolar disorder in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The musical, about a woman’s ride with a bipolar disorder as swervy as a luge run, cleaves the heart. Washington Post, "Best theater of 2020: Sondheim’s birthday, ‘To Kill a Mockingbird,’ Mary Neely, ‘The Amen Corner’ and more," 9 Dec. 2020 In severe cases this can manifest as bipolar disorder, but in the majority of instances, disparate and even conflictual emotional states are very nothing to be concerned about, in of themselves. David H. Rosmarin, Scientific American, "Managing Emotional Polarization This Holiday Season," 7 Dec. 2020 Wasden has struggled with bipolar disorder for most of her life. CBS News, "Mother with bipolar disorder on how she faced her diagnosis: "I am not going to hide anymore"," 30 Nov. 2020 Aside from governing sleep, melatonin is linked to many other biological processes, like reproductive development, and may possibly underlie cancer and mental health disorders like major depressive or bipolar disorder. Miriam Fauzia, USA TODAY, "Fact check: Melatonin could help against COVID-19, but more studies are needed," 24 Nov. 2020 Wallace had been taking lithium, a mood stabilizer used to treat bipolar disorder, Johnson said. NBC News, "Family says Walter Wallace Jr., killed by Philadelphia police, needed mental health treatment," 27 Oct. 2020 Williams’ 2017 lawsuit, filed under then-Sheriff McDonnell, alleged that deputies used unjustified force toward Rogers, who managed bipolar disorder with medication. Leila Miller Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, "Sheriff defied court orders, did not name deputies with histories of misconduct. It was a costly decision," 17 Oct. 2020 Imani Fecu, 24 years old, who struggled with schizoaffective and bipolar disorder, was discharged from Health + Hospitals/Kings County, a public hospital, days after being admitted in late March. Shalini Ramachandran, WSJ, "A Hidden Cost of Covid: Shrinking Mental-Health Services," 9 Oct. 2020 Dunbar experiences bipolar disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Paula Dobbyn, Anchorage Daily News, "New clinic at Sullivan Arena connects homeless with medical care," 19 Sep. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bipolar disorder.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of bipolar disorder

1972, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of bipolar disorder was in 1972

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Statistics for bipolar disorder

Last Updated

9 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Bipolar disorder.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for bipolar disorder

bipolar disorder


Medical Definition of bipolar disorder

: any of several mood disorders characterized usually by alternating episodes of depression and mania

Note: The mania experienced in bipolar disorder may be of the euphoric or irritable type or both.

called also bipolar affective disorder, bipolar illness, manic depression, manic-depressive illness, manic-depressive psychosis

— compare major depressive disorder

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