National Bipolar Awareness Day: Help is at hand for Manchester’s 500,000 sufferers with campaign and research

By Tim Hyde

National Bipolar Awareness Day is hoping to provide support to Manchester’s estimated 500,000 sufferers of the complex and devastating condition.

The mental condition is believed to affect up to one in 20 of us and remains one of the main causes of loss of life for 15 to 44-year-olds.

Manchester Mental Health and Social Care Trust is conducting ground-breaking research projects to improve treatments for bipolar disorder.

The awareness day also hopes to prove the public’s awareness and understanding.

Lisa Riste, Programme Manager for Psychoeducation Anxiety Relapse Advance Directives Evaluation and Suicidality (PARADES), helps develop new psychological approaches.  

“Bipolar affects one to two per cent of the population and research also suggests as many as one in 20 of us are on the bipolar spectrum,” said Ms Riste.

“It affects every aspect of life including relationships with friends and family as well as employment prospects and, like other mental health illnesses, it is still affected by misunderstanding and stigma.

“The studies that the Trust is leading on will help develop new treatments and test their effectiveness.”

The charity Bipolar UK was 30 yesterday and to celebrate the charity have is marked its anniversary with the publication ‘30 Years of Bipolar’.

In the booklet the charity focus on the life experiences of 30 individuals, each of whom received a diagnosis for bipolar during one of the past 30 years.

Suzanne Hudson, Bipolar UK’s Chief Executive, said: “In many regards awareness and understanding of what is now known as bipolar has improved, but as highlighted in these personal stories there is still a long, long way to go.”

Bipolar UK help treat and care for 65,000 people suffering from a life threatening condition including Marc* who was diagnosed this year.

“Bipolar has affected me in ways which I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy,” said Marc in Bipolar UK’s awareness publication.

“I am now ‘OK’ the combination of medication and exercise and the correct diagnosis seem to be working well.

“I see my Community Psychiatric Nurse weekly, I have the crisis team keeping an eye on me and I am trying hard to rebuild the wreck that is my life.”

*Source only wanted to be identified as Marc

Picture courtesy of Jugbar via Flickr, with thanks.

For more on this story and many others, follow Mancunian Matters on Twitter and Facebook.

Related Articles